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Silica-bound functional nanopockets

English title Silica-bound functional nanopockets
Applicant Brühwiler Dominik
Number 117591
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Institut für Chemie Universität Zürich
Institution of higher education University of Zurich - ZH
Main discipline Inorganic Chemistry
Start/End 01.11.2007 - 28.02.2010
Approved amount 134'677.00
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Keywords (12)

mesoporous; functionalization; pocket; grafting; surface; silica; Channel; Nanopocket; Luminescence; Fluorescence; Synthesis; Host-Guest

Lay Summary (English)

Lay summary
Mesoporous silicas are robust silicon dioxide based powders or membranes featuring a periodic arrangement of nanometer-sized channels. Molecules with specific functions can be introduced into the channels, generating materials with potential applications in various fields, including catalysis, sensing, adsorption, and drug delivery. We are primarily developing methods to control and analyze the distribution of molecules on the external particle surface and in the channels of mesoporous silicas. As an extension of this approach, we are investigating the synthesis of molecular pockets. These so-called nanopockets are bound to the channel walls of a mesoporous material and are able to provide a defined environment for guest species. The concept of surface-bound nanopockets offers possibilities for tuning the photophysical properties, catalytic activity, or chemical reactivity of guest molecules, while benefiting from the advantage of a non-toxic silica framework.
The selective binding of molecules to the external particle surface and the channel walls of mesoporous silicas is a prerequisite for developing advanced drug delivery devices. Functional groups on the external surface are responsible for ensuring blood stability and providing targeting ability, whereas the modified channel walls supply sites for drug adsorption and moieties for triggering and controlling the release process.
We further intend to develop novel optical sensors and luminescent markers based on our techniques for selective functionalization and pocket formation. Using a specific technology for a variety of applications allows for achieving multifunctionality through combination. One could, for example, envisage a system capable of delivering drugs to a target while simultaneously acting as a luminescent marker or optical sensor, being able to provide information about the actual site of drug release.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

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Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
140303 Molecular Alignment Chips 01.10.2012 Project funding
109185 Silica-bound functional nanopockets 01.11.2005 Project funding