Superstructure Formation and Topological Evolution Achieved by Self-Organization of a Highly Adaptive Dynamer
Pengyao Xing, Hongzhong Chen, Linyi Bai, Aiyou Hao, Yanli Zhao
The adaptive property of supramolecular building blocks facilitates noncovalent synthesis of soft materials. While it is still a challenging task, fine-tuning and precise control over topological nanostructures constructed from the self-assembly of low-molecular-weight building blocks are an important research direction to investigate the structure–property relationship. Herein, we report controlled self-assembly evolution of a low-molecular-weight building block bearing cholesterol and naphthalene-dicarboximide moieties, showing ultrasensitivity to solvent polarity. In low-polarity solvents (<4), it could form an M-type fiber-constituted organogel (supergel) with high solvent content, columnar molecular packing, and self-healing property. Highly polar solvents (>7.8) favor the formation of P-type helical nanostructures terminated by nanotoroids, having lamellar molecular packing. With a further increase in solvent polarity (up to 9.6), unilamellar and multilamellar vesicles were generated, which could undergo an aggregation-induced fusion process to form branched nanotubes tuned by the concentration. Self-attractive interactions between aggregates were found to be responsible for the formation of superstructures including helix–nanotoroid junctions as well as membrane-fused nanotubes.
Circular dichroism, Nanostructures, Vesicle interactions, Materials