Potential analytical applications of gated artificial ion channels

Husaru, L.; Schulze, R.; Steiner, G.; Wolff, T.; Habicher, W. D.; Salzer, R.
August 2005
Analytical & Bioanalytical Chemistry;Aug2005, Vol. 382 Issue 8, p1882
Academic Journal
Biosensors based on natural ion channels combine a biological recognition mechanism with a physical transduction technique in a very selective and sensitive manner. This kind of molecular sensor will contribute to drug screening and environmental screening. Key information about channel gating, ion transport, and molecular mechanism is provided by the patch-clamp technique, commonly used for electrophysiological analysis. Here we report the synthesis of light-gated artificial ion channels, necessary constituents for construction of biosensors based on natural ion channels. The artificial gated ion channels described here are based on calix[4]resorcinarene. Opening and closing of the artificial ion channel is achieved by azo groups, which work like a lid. Azo groups alter their conformation on irradiation with light, and are chemically quite stable. Addition of a gate function will enhance the potential of synthetic channels to be used in sensors as molecular switches.


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