Molecule of the Month
May 2009
Oligopyrenotides -
Abiotic Foldamers with Nucleic Acid-Like Structural Properties

Oligopyrenotides are composed of achiral, phosphodiester-linked pyrene building blocks and a single chiral 1,2-diaminocyclohexane unit. Oligomers form stable hybrids in aqueous solution. Hybridisation is based on stacking interactions of the pyrene building blocks. Hybrids display salt concentration-dependent, structural polymorphism. They adopt left- or right-handed double helical conformations, depending on the salt concentration.
Oligopyrenotides possess a number of structural attributes typical for DNA and RNA and, therefore, represent potential alternatives to the nucleic acids.

This work was carried out in the group of Prof. Robert Häner.


  • Robert Häner, Florent Samain and Vladimir L. Malinovskii;
    "DNA-Assisted Self-Assembly of Pyrene Foldamers"
    Chem. Eur. J., 15, 5701-5708, (2009); doi:10.1002/chem.200900369.