Single-molecule covalent chemistry under confinement


NaMeS students are invited to IPC PAS Seminar delivered by the winner of the 2019 Dream Chemistry Award :

Dr. Yujia Quin

University of Oxford

Thursday, 14th May, 2020, 10.00, via Zoom


Link to join zoom seminar:
Meeting ID: 913 5867 6044
Password: 014835


Covalent chemistry can be observed at the single-molecule level by using engineered protein pores as nanoreactors. Individual bond-breaking and bond-making events are monitored in real-time as perturbations to the ionic current passing through the nanopores. Through this approach, we have detected short-lived intermediates of small-molecule reactions and determined the kinetic rate constants for their formation and breakdown. We have further exploited the nanoscale dimensions of protein nanoreactors to study chemistry under confinement. Site-selective control of chemistry on polymers confined within a nanoreactor has been established by spatial organisation of the reactants. The associated chemistry has been elaborated into a remarkable molecular machine, a molecular hopper, which takes directional sub-nanometre steps along a protein track while carrying a DNA cargo. The ability to ratchet individual biopolymers through a detector with chemical control might facilitate the development of a highly parallel universal sequencing platform.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 711859.