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Designer peptide–DNA cytoskeletons regulate the function of synthetic cells

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 23 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01509-wAdvances in the development of cytoskeletal-like materials with modular structures and mechanics are pivotal for the engineering of synthetic cells. Now actin-mimetic supramolecular peptide networks have been designed using programmable peptide–DNA crosslinkers, giving...

Tue Apr 23, 2024 13:58
Proton-triggered topological transformation in superbase-mediated selective polymerization enables access to ultrahigh-molar-mass cyclic polymers

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 22 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01511-2The selective synthesis of ultrahigh-molar-mass (UHMM) cyclic polymers from direct polymerization is elusive. Using a chemically recyclable polythioester as a model, it has now been shown that a common superbase mediates living linear-chain growth, followed by proton-triggered...

Mon Apr 22, 2024 13:49
Mechanical scission of a knotted polymer

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 22 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01510-3Knots reduce the tensile strength of macroscopic threads and fibres. Now it has been shown that the presence of a well-defined overhand knot in a polymer chain can substantially increase the rate of scission of the polymer under tension, as deformation of the polymer backbone...

Mon Apr 22, 2024 13:49
Upcycling chlorinated trash into synthetic organic treasure

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 19 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01515-yChlorine-containing waste streams pose potential risks to human health and the environment, so their remediation represents a significant challenge. Now, chlorinated wastes have been successfully repurposed as chlorinating reagents for use in the preparation of organic...

Fri Apr 19, 2024 13:56
Assembling the pieces to improve catalysis

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 19 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01513-0Understanding the ways by which metal-containing catalysts carry out a reaction is a chemical puzzle. Now, investigations of a multi-metallic molecular system uncover how the self-assembly of molecular catalysts facilitates cooperation between active species and improves...

Fri Apr 19, 2024 13:56
Deprotonated 2-thiolimidazole serves as a metal-free electrocatalyst for selective acetylene hydrogenation

Nature Chemistry, Published online: 19 April 2024; doi:10.1038/s41557-024-01480-6Although metal-free catalysts, featuring defined active sites, represent alternatives to scarce or problematic metals, metal-free compounds rarely show activities as promising as metal-based materials. Now deprotonated 2-thiolimidazole is shown to serve as a metal-free...

Fri Apr 19, 2024 13:56

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