Reversible ion transportation switch by a ligand-gated synthetic supramolecular ion channel

Takahiro Muraoka, Takahiro Endo, Kazuhito V. Tabata, Hiroyuki Noji, Satoru Nagatoishi, Kouhei Tsumoto, Rui Li, Kazushi Kinbara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Inspired by the regulation of cellular activities found in the ion channel proteins, here we developed membrane-embedded synthetic chiral receptors 1 and 2 with different terminal structures, where receptor 1 has hydrophobic triisopropylsilyl (TIPS) groups and receptor 2 has hydrophilic hydroxy groups. The receptors have ligand-binding units that interact with cationic amphiphiles such as 2-phenethylamine (PA). Conductance study revealed that the receptors hardly show ion transportation at the ligand-free state. After ligand binding involving a conformational change, receptor 1 bearing TIPS termini displays a significant current enhancement due to ion transportation. The current substantially diminishes upon addition of β-cyclodextrin (βCD) that scavenges the ligand from the receptor. Importantly, the receptor again turns into the conductive state by the second addition of PA, and the activation/deactivation of the ion transportation can be repeated. In contrast, receptor 2 bearing the hydroxy terminal groups hardly exhibits ion transportation, suggesting the importance of terminal TIPS groups of 1 that likely anchor the receptor in the membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15584-15595
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number44
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Nov 5

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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