Materials Science

Connecting the dots

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Science  21 Dec 2018:
Vol. 362, Issue 6421, pp. 1373-1374
DOI: 10.1126/science.362.6421.1373-f

Much of the power of chemistry comes from the wide range of methods that can be used to connect atoms and molecules selectively at desired positions. Colloidal nanoparticles offer their own range of tunable properties that can be enhanced by connecting them together into superstructures through the bonding of their oligomeric surface ligands. Chen et al. developed a method using a block copolymer and solvent to selectively cover part of the nanoparticles, creating a mask for subsequent attachment of DNA. The coverage of the particles can be tuned by adjusting the ratio of hydrophilic to hydrophobic ligand, because this changes the way the ligands pack on the surface of the nanoparticles.

Nat. Mater. 10.1038/s41563-018-0231-1 (2018).

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