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Controlled growth of ordered monolayers of N-heterocyclic carbenes on silicon

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 21 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00721-2Although monolayers of N-heterocyclic carbenes (NHCs) readily form on metals, surface reactivity usually hinders their self-assembly on semiconductors. Now, it has been shown that thermally stable, well-ordered monolayers of NHCs can be formed on silicon surfaces. A large...

Metal ion fluxes controlling amphibian fertilization

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 21 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00705-2Zinc fluxes have now been shown to be essential in the fertilization of amphibian eggs. Furthermore, manganese(ii), which is initially bound to low-molecular-weight carboxylates, is stored and released with zinc from cortical vesicles following fertilization. This rapid...

Controlled growth of ordered monolayers of N-heterocyclic carbenes on silicon

Metal ion fluxes controlling amphibian fertilization

Bite-size science

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 15 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00747-6Bite-size science

Bite-size science

The gains from breaking symmetry

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 10 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00731-0All-carbon quaternary centres are challenging targets in organic synthesis. Now, the development of a zinc-catalysed desymmetrization method enables the synthesis of chiral alcohols with all-carbon quaternary centres by the selective reduction of symmetrical α,α-disubstituted...

Catalytic reductive desymmetrization of malonic esters

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 10 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00715-0The desymmetrization of easily accessible malonic esters represents an attractive approach towards the formation of chiral quaternary stereocentres, but is largely limited to enzymatic hydrolysis. Now, a zinc-catalysed asymmetric hydrosilylation reaction—that works with...

Chiral lipid bilayers are enantioselectively permeable

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 10 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00708-zDroplet interface bilayer measurements have now shown that membranes formed from chiral phospholipid bilayers are enantioselectively permeable to chiral amino acids. The results show that membrane stereochemistry is necessary and sufficient to drive such enantioselective...

Switching on prodrugs using radiotherapy

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 10 June 2021; doi:10.1038/s41557-021-00711-4Prodrugs offer one route to treat cancer, but they require activation once they have been delivered to the tumour. Now, a simultaneous chemo-radiotherapy strategy has been demonstrated in mice that uses gamma or X-ray irradiation to locally activate an anticancer prodrug.

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