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Open AccessArticle

Symmetry Breaking in Self-Assembled Nanoassemblies

by 1,2 and 1,2,3,*
1
CAS Key Laboratory of Colloid, Interface and Chemical Thermodynamics, Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Zhongguancun North First Street 2, Beijing 100190, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
Collaborative Innovation Centre of Chemical Science and Engineering, Tianjin 300072, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Symmetry 2019, 11(8), 950; https://doi.org/10.3390/sym11080950
Received: 26 June 2019 / Revised: 13 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 25 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Possible Scenarios for Homochirality on Earth)
The origin of biological homochirality, e.g., life selects the L-amino acids and D-sugar as molecular component, still remains a big mystery. It is suggested that mirror symmetry breaking plays an important role. Recent researches show that symmetry breaking can also occur at a supramolecular level, where the non-covalent bond was crucial. In these systems, equal or unequal amount of the enantiomeric nanoassemblies could be formed from achiral molecules. In this paper, we presented a brief overview regarding the symmetry breaking from dispersed system to gels, solids, and at interfaces. Then we discuss the rational manipulation of supramolecular chirality on how to induce and control the homochirality in the self-assembly system. Those physical control methods, such as Viedma ripening, hydrodynamic macro- and micro-vortex, superchiral light, and the combination of these technologies, are specifically discussed. It is hoped that the symmetry breaking at a supramolecular level could provide useful insights into the understanding of natural homochirality and further designing as well as controlling of functional chiral materials. View Full-Text
Keywords: symmetry breaking; assemblies; supramolecular chirality; homochirality; self-assembly; vortex symmetry breaking; assemblies; supramolecular chirality; homochirality; self-assembly; vortex
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Sang, Y.; Liu, M. Symmetry Breaking in Self-Assembled Nanoassemblies. Symmetry 2019, 11, 950.

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