Receptor Chemistry

Easier binding the second time around

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Science  27 Feb 2015:
Vol. 347, Issue 6225, pp. 961
DOI: 10.1126/science.347.6225.961-g

The hemoglobin protein that shuttles oxygen around our blood manifests a well-known example of cooperative binding: Once one oxygen jumps aboard, the protein conformation shifts to accommodate others more easily. Gan et al. present a synthetic x-shaped receptor complex that similarly binds two oxocarbon anions cooperatively. Spectroscopic monitoring revealed an order-of-magnitude enhancement in binding of the second anion relative to the first. The receptor is held together by cadmium ions, and swapping them out for copper, in conjunction with a solvent switch induced efficient release of both bound guests.

J. Am. Chem. Soc. 137, 10.1021/ja5120437 (2015).

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