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SHAPE-PERSISTENT ORGANIC NANOCAGES FOR BIOMIMETIC SENSING AND CATALYSIS
Methods of protein engineering and mutation to achieve selective and designed enzymatic function are often challenged by issues with foldamer stability. Molecular nanocages present an exciting new opportunity for biomimetic-defined cavities capable of biomolecule recognition and catalysis. While many different types of molecular cages exist, covalent organic molecular cages offer great flexibility and control over the design of the cage. Furthermore, the covalent linkages provide a robust framework resistant to degradation and stable in many chemical environments. Lastly, covalent organic cages may be designed for the precise placement of functional groups, including group placement inside the cage cavity for molecular recognition and binding. I report our recent advances in developing new synthetic methods for robust organic molecular cages with well-defined cavities and tunable functions for artificial enzyme catalysis and recognition. The basic design philosophy for such protein-mimetic structures will be introduced for the scalable synthesis of these macromolecules. Herein, we report two approaches to a [8+12] triazine-linked organic cage and a similar [8+12] triazine and boroxine-linked cage. While our first approach attempts a kinetically controlled tethered cage formation, our second method relies on the principles of dynamic covalent chemistry in the thermodynamically controlled self-assembly of the final cage structure.
- Master of Science
- West Lafayette