Supramolecular Gels

A special issue of Gels (ISSN 2310-2861).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2018) | Viewed by 34080

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
1. Department of Chemistry, Faraday Building, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YB, UK
2. Materials Science Institute, Faraday Building, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YB, UK
Interests: polymer synthesis; supramolecular materials; biomaterials; stimuli-responsive materials; drug delivery; tissue engineering; sustainability
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Guest Editor
Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering, The University of Chicago, 5640 S. Ellis Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637, USA
Interests: biomaterials; peptides; self-assembly; molecular engineering; bioengineering; nanomaterials; bioinspired materials; nanomedicine
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nature employs a combination of supramolecular interactions (e.g., electrostatic, hydrophobic, π-π, cation/anion-π, van der Waals forces, hydrogen-bonding, and metal coordination) to generate hierarchically-ordered structures with remarkable stimuli-responsive properties. The same structure-directing forces can, in principle, be employed for the realization of man-made assemblies with similar or perhaps even greater utility. We warmly welcome submissions related to the preparation, characterization and applications of supramolecular gels, as well as gelation mechanisms. Special focus will be given to any emerging application of these fascinating materials. Fields such as biomedicine, catalysis, energy, coatings, cosmetics, health care, etc., should be great beneficiaries of this Special Issue.

Dr. John G. Hardy
Dr. Mustafa O. Guler
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Gels is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • supramolecular interactions
  • self-assembly
  • supramolecular polymers
  • supracolloidal chemistry
  • drug delivery
  • tissue engineering
  • regenerative medicine

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Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 12923 KiB  
Article
Chiral Assembly Preferences and Directing Effects in Supramolecular Two-Component Organogels
by William Edwards and David K. Smith
Gels 2018, 4(2), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels4020031 - 29 Mar 2018
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 5080
Abstract
The impact of chirality on the self-assembly of supramolecular gels is of considerable importance, as molecular-scale programming can be translated into nanostructuring and ultimately affect macroscopic performance. This paper explores the effect of chirality on the assembly of two-component gels comprised of a [...] Read more.
The impact of chirality on the self-assembly of supramolecular gels is of considerable importance, as molecular-scale programming can be translated into nanostructuring and ultimately affect macroscopic performance. This paper explores the effect of chirality on the assembly of two-component gels comprised of a second-generation dendritic lysine peptide acid, containing three chiral centres, and an amine. This combination forms an acid–amine complex that assembles into nanofibres through peptide-peptide hydrogen bonds, leading to organogels. With achiral amines, a racemic mixture of l,l,l and d,d,d dendritic peptide acids surprisingly forms the best gels—more commonly, mixing enantiomers suppresses gelation. Thermodynamic studies demonstrate that depending on the amine, the greater stability of heterochiral gels can either be entropically or enthalpically driven. With amines possessing “R” chirality, the l,l,l peptide acid consistently forms more effective gels than its d,d,d analogue. Furthermore, in mixed gels, l,l,l sometimes imposes its assembly preference onto d,d,d. In summary, this paper demonstrates a rare example in which heterochiral gels are preferred, and also explores directing effects when each component in a two-component gel is chiral. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
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8 pages, 1293 KiB  
Article
Using Aggregation-Induced Emission to Understand Dipeptide Gels
by Ana M. Castilla, Bart Dietrich and Dave J. Adams
Gels 2018, 4(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels4010017 - 09 Feb 2018
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 4715
Abstract
We describe the formation of structured liquids and gels from a functionalised dipeptide based on tetraphenylethylene. Tetraphenylethylene is well-known to be able to undergo aggregation-induced emission. We use the emission data to understand the behaviour of the dipeptide in water under a variety [...] Read more.
We describe the formation of structured liquids and gels from a functionalised dipeptide based on tetraphenylethylene. Tetraphenylethylene is well-known to be able to undergo aggregation-induced emission. We use the emission data to understand the behaviour of the dipeptide in water under a variety of conditions. The dipeptide forms viscous solutions at high pH. Gels can be formed by a pH-trigger, but syneresis occurs. Addition of a calcium salt also leads to a gel with slight syneresis. Addition of sodium chloride leads to a self-supporting material, but this is not a true gel from the rheological perspective. From the emission data, we infer that there are limited structural changes on addition of sodium chloride or acid, but there are significant changes in molecular packing when the gel is formed by addition of a calcium salt. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
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4500 KiB  
Communication
Supramolecular Gel Formation Based on Glycolipids Derived from Renewable Resources
by Krishnamoorthy Lalitha, Kandasamy Gayathri, Yadavali Siva Prasad, Rajendhiran Saritha, A. Thamizhanban, C. Uma Maheswari, Vellaisamy Sridharan and Subbiah Nagarajan
Gels 2018, 4(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels4010001 - 24 Dec 2017
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 5972
Abstract
The potential applications of self-assembled supramolecular gels based on natural molecules encouraged the researchers to develop a versatile synthetic method for their structural analogues. Herein, we report a facile synthesis of glycolipid from renewable resources, cashew nut shell liquid,d and d-glucose in [...] Read more.
The potential applications of self-assembled supramolecular gels based on natural molecules encouraged the researchers to develop a versatile synthetic method for their structural analogues. Herein, we report a facile synthesis of glycolipid from renewable resources, cashew nut shell liquid,d and d-glucose in good yield. Gelation behavior of these glycolipids were studied in a wide range of solvents and oils. To our delight, compound 5b formed a hydrogel with Critical gelator concentration (CGC) of 0.29% w/v. Morphological analysis of the hydrogel depicts the formation of twisted fibers with an entangled network. Formation of a twisted fibrous structure was further identified by CD spectral studies with respect to temperature. The molecular self-assembly assisted by hydrogen bonding, hydrophobic, and π–π stacking interactions were identified by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and FTIR studies. Rheological analysis depicted the mechanical strength and stability of the hydrogel, which is crucial in predicting the practical applications of supramolecular soft materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
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Review

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34 pages, 7610 KiB  
Review
Carbohydrate Derived Organogelators and the Corresponding Functional Gels Developed in Recent Time
by Nabamita Basu, Arijit Chakraborty and Rina Ghosh
Gels 2018, 4(2), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels4020052 - 30 May 2018
Cited by 28 | Viewed by 7112
Abstract
Owing to their multifarious applicability, studies of molecular and supramolecular gelators and their corresponding gels have gained momentum, particularly in the last two decades. Hydrophobic–hydrophilic balance, different solvent parameters, gelator–gelator and gelator–solvent interactions, including different noncovalent intermolecular interactive forces like H-bonding, ionic interactions, [...] Read more.
Owing to their multifarious applicability, studies of molecular and supramolecular gelators and their corresponding gels have gained momentum, particularly in the last two decades. Hydrophobic–hydrophilic balance, different solvent parameters, gelator–gelator and gelator–solvent interactions, including different noncovalent intermolecular interactive forces like H-bonding, ionic interactions, π–π interactions, van der Waals interactions, etc., cause the supramolecular gel assembly of micro and nano scales with different types of morphologies, depending on the gelator, solvent, and condition of gelation. These gel structures can be utilized for making template inorganic superstructures for potential application in separation, generation of nanocomposite materials, and other applications like self-healing, controlled drug encapsulation, release and delivery, as structuring agents, oil-spill recovery, for preparation of semi-conducting fabrics, and in many other fields. Sugars, being easily available, inexpensive, and nontoxic natural resources with multi functionality and well-defined chirality are attractive starting materials for the preparation of sugar-based gelators. This review will focus on compilation of sugar derived organogelators and the corresponding gels, along with the potential applications that have been developed and published recently between January 2015 and March 2018. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
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33 pages, 4558 KiB  
Review
Beyond Covalent Crosslinks: Applications of Supramolecular Gels
by Ty Christoff-Tempesta, Andrew J. Lew and Julia H. Ortony
Gels 2018, 4(2), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels4020040 - 03 May 2018
Cited by 56 | Viewed by 9968
Abstract
Traditionally, gels have been defined by their covalently cross-linked polymer networks. Supramolecular gels challenge this framework by relying on non-covalent interactions for self-organization into hierarchical structures. This class of materials offers a variety of novel and exciting potential applications. This review draws together [...] Read more.
Traditionally, gels have been defined by their covalently cross-linked polymer networks. Supramolecular gels challenge this framework by relying on non-covalent interactions for self-organization into hierarchical structures. This class of materials offers a variety of novel and exciting potential applications. This review draws together recent advances in supramolecular gels with an emphasis on their proposed uses as optoelectronic, energy, biomedical, and biological materials. Additional special topics reviewed include environmental remediation, participation in synthesis procedures, and other industrial uses. The examples presented here demonstrate unique benefits of supramolecular gels, including tunability, processability, and self-healing capability, enabling a new approach to solve engineering challenges. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Supramolecular Gels)
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