Chemical Topology and Interlocking Molecules

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Science  28 May 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5675, pp. 1256-1258
DOI: 10.1126/science.1099216

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Over the past 40 years, chemists have sought to create complex interlocking molecular structures. In his Perspective, Siegel discusses work reported in the same issue by two groups, in which the synthesis of intricate interwoven molecules has been taken to a new level. Wang et al. report the creation of a novel multicatenane from interpenetrating calixarenes. Chichak et al. present the synthesis of a Borromean link in molecular form. The hope is that molecules of increasingly complex topology will not only provide aesthetically attractive structures, but may find use in applications such as nanotechnology.

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