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J Am Chem Soc. 2019 Jun 26;141(25):9788-9792. doi: 10.1021/jacs.9b04096. Epub 2019 Jun 13.

Molecular Ion Fishers as Highly Active and Exceptionally Selective K+ Transporters.

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College of Chemistry and Bioengineering , Hunan University of Science and Engineering , Yongzhou , Hunan 425100 , China.
The NanoBio Lab , 31 Biopolis Way , The Nanos 138669 , Singapore.


We report here a unique ion-fishing mechanism as an alternative to conventional carrier or channel mechanisms for mediating highly efficient and exceptionally selective transmembrane K+ flux. The molecular framework, underlying the fishing mechanism and comprising a fishing rod, a fishing line and a fishing bait/hook, is simple yet modularly modifiable. This feature enables rapid construction of a series of molecular ion fishers with distinctively different ion transport patterns. While more efficient ion transports are generally achieved by using 18-crown-6 as the fishing bait/hook, ion transport selectivity (K+/Na+) critically depends on the length of the fishing line, with the most selective MF6-C14 exhibiting exceptionally high selectivity (K+/Na+ = 18) and high activity ( EC50 = 1.1 mol % relative to lipid).


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