Supramolecular chemical reactors Towards the application of self-assembled polymersomes in cascade reactions

S. Brauch, Z. Wang, M.C.M. van Oers, J.C.M. van Hest, F.P.J.T. Rutjes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Inspired by biosynthetic processes in nature, chemists increasingly design processes such that no longer single steps, but sequences of multiple steps are being conducted in a single reaction vessel. This does not only lead to lower costs (fewer workup steps are required), but additionally reactions with unfavourable equilibria, can be driven to full conversion if they are incorporated in a sequence of multiple steps. However, the multiple reagents and catalysts that are required in such multistep sequences often suffer from incompatibilities: they either interfere with each other, or may not be compatible with the solvent that is used. In this article we describe how supramolecular assemblies can be used to solve these issues. In particular the use of polymersomes, permeable nanoparticles that are composed of amphiphilic polymers, will be highlighted to physically separate different catalyst systems and to enhance phase separation, thereby enabling multiple reactions in one pot.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-77
Number of pages5
JournalChimica Oggi
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Biphasic reactions
  • Cascade reactions
  • Compartmentalization
  • Enzyme catalysis
  • Polymersomes
  • Transition metal catalysis


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