Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Water-soluble molecularly imprinted nanoparticles (MINPs) were produced easily by double cross-linking of surfactant micelles in the presence of suitable template molecules. The micellar surface could be modified with different groups to help the binding of guest molecules. The core could be tuned though usage of amide-containing surfactants that gave a layer of hydrogen-bonding groups in the interior. The location and the orientation of these surface and internal functional groups were important to the molecular recognition of MINPs as receptors.
It remains difficult to construct mimics of enzymatic active sites with accurately positioned catalytic groups and tunable selectivity for substrates. Artificial zinc esterases were prepared through molecular imprinting a substrate-like amino template coordinated to a polymerizable zinc complex inside cross-linked micelles. The resulting catalysts were able to distinguish substrates that differed by the position of a single methyl group, chain length of the acyl chain, and substitution of the phenyl ring. The activity of the substrate was enhanced through inclusion of a thiourea functional group as an oxyanion hole to stabilize the transition state of the ester during hydrolysis.
Arifuzzaman, Md, "Molecularly imprinted nanoparticles (MINPs) for molecular recognition and bio-mimetic catalysis in water" (2019). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 16964.