Research ArticleChemistry

Competitive chiral induction in a 2D molecular assembly: Intrinsic chirality versus coadsorber-induced chirality

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Science Advances  03 Nov 2017:
Vol. 3, no. 11, e1701208
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1701208

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Noncovalently introducing stereogenic information is a promising approach to embed chirality in achiral molecular systems. However, the interplay of the noncovalently introduced chirality with the intrinsic chirality of molecules or molecular aggregations has rarely been addressed. We report a competitive chiral expression of the noncovalent interaction–mediated chirality induction and the intrinsic stereogenic center–controlled chirality induction in a two-dimensional (2D) molecular assembly at the liquid/solid interface. Two enantiomorphous honeycomb networks are formed by the coassembly of an achiral 5-(benzyloxy)isophthalic acid (BIC) derivative and 1-octanol at the liquid/solid interface. The preferential formation of the globally homochiral assembly can be achieved either by using the chiral analog of 1-octanol, (S)-6-methyl-1-octanol, as a chiral coadsorber to induce chirality to the BIC assembly via noncovalent hydrogen bonding or by covalently linking a chiral center in the side chain of BIC. Both the chiral coadsorber and the intrinsically chiral BIC derivative can act as a chiral seeds to induce a preferred handedness in the assembly of the achiral BIC derivatives. Furthermore, the noncovalent interaction–mediated chirality induction can restrain or even overrule the manifestation of the intrinsic chirality of the BIC molecule and dominate the handedness of the 2D molecular coassembly. This study provides insight into the interplay of intrinsically chiral centers and external chiral coadsorbers in the chiral induction, transfer, and amplification processes of 2D molecular assembly.

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