Facile Synthesis of Helical Multiblock Copolypeptides: Minimal Side Reactions with Accelerated Polymerization of N-Carboxyanhydrides

Xuefang Wang, Ziyuan Song, Zhengzhong Tan, Lingyang Zhu, Tianrui Xue, Shixian Lv, Zihuan Fu, Xuetao Zheng, Jie Ren, Jianjun Cheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Multiblock copolypeptides have attracted broad interests because their potential to form ordered structures and possess protein-mimetic functions. Controlled synthesis of multiblock copolypeptides through the sequential addition of N-carboxyanhydrides (NCAs), especially with the block number higher than five, however, is challenging and rarely reported due to competing side reactions during the polymerization process. Herein, we report the unprecedented synthesis of block copolypeptides with up to 20 blocks, enabled by ultrafast polypeptide chain propagation in a water/chloroform emulsion system that outpaces side reactions and ensures high end-group fidelity. Well-defined multiblock copolypeptides with desired block numbers, block lengths, and block sequences, as well as very low dispersity were readily attainable in a few hours. This method paves the way for the fast production of a large number of sequence-regulated multiblock copolypeptide materials, which may exhibit interesting assembly behaviors and biomedical applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1517-1521
Number of pages5
JournalACS Macro Letters
Volume8
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 19 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Materials Chemistry

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