Photochemical single-molecule affinity switch

Christian Schäfer, Rainer Eckel, Robert Ros, Jochen Mattay, Dario Anselmetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Manipulation and control at the molecular level is a prerequisite for future nanomachines and nanodevices. In order to build a bistable molecular affinity switch, we have synthesized a supramolecular guest-host system whose binding affinity can externally be controlled and repetitively switched by UV light or heating. This photochemical macrocycle, which incorporates a supramolecular resorc[4]arene receptor cavity and two photodimerizable anthracene moieties, has been investigated by single-molecule force spectroscopy under external optical control which proved the repetitive and selective activation and deactivation at the level of individual molecular complexes. This synthetic photochemical single-molecule reaction acts as an intermolecular switch and can be affinity-tuned under external control, which allows new concepts for directed molecular assembly and motional functionalities at the nanoscale in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1488-1489
Number of pages2
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number6
StatePublished - Feb 14 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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