Assembly of Metallacages into Soft Suprastructures with Dimensions of up to Micrometers and the Formation of Composite Materials

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This work provides a platform for the rapid generation of superstructure assemblies with a wide range of lengths that can be used to access a variety of metal–organic complex-based soft superstructures. Metallacage-based microneedles that are nanometers in diameter and millimeters in length were generated in dichloromethane and ethyl acetate; their size could be controlled by adjusting the ratio of the two solvents. Interestingly, microflower structures could be formed by further assembly of the microneedles during solvent evaporation. Our study establishes a feasible method designed to broaden the range of suprastructures with emissions from blue and green to red through the co-assembly of lysine-modified perylene. Similar to the co-assembly of lysine-modified perylene with microflowers, chlorophyll-a and vitamin B12 were introduced into the microflowers during the assembly process, which may be exploited in studies of energy capture and nerve repair in the future.

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Journal of the American Chemical Society, v. 140, issue 49, p. 17297-17307