Synthesis and Structure of Molecular Tweezers Containing Active Site Functionality

Steven C. Zimmerman, Zijian Zeng, Weiming Wu, David E. Reichert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

86 Scopus citations


A series of molecules has been synthesized in which a functional group is buried inside an aromatic binding cleft. These novel compounds, called “molecular tweezers”, have a methyl ester (6a, 7–9a, 10a), a carboxylic acid (6b, 9b, 10b, 45), or a nitrile (50) in their clefts. Molecular tweezer 21 has a metal ligand, an annelated terpyridine, oriented toward the binding cleft. The structures of 7–10 have been determined either by X-ray analysis or by molecular modeling techniques and were found to contain different inter-anthracene (acridine) distances and varying degrees of twist in their spacers. As precursors to nucleotide base receptors, these molecules represent four discrete steps toward the development of an optimized receptor for adenine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-196
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry (all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Synthesis and Structure of Molecular Tweezers Containing Active Site Functionality'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this