Spinach chlorophyll activates polymer production line

Elisabeth Ratcliffe writes about a hot Chemical Science article for Chemistry World

Inspired by nature, scientists in Australia have united light and chlorophyll to generate a range of polymers that have biomedical applications.

During photosynthesis, chlorophyll is activated by visible light, and an electron is promoted from its ground state to an excited state. In plants, this excited electron goes on to react with carbon dioxide and water, via photoinduced electron transfer (PET). However, in the system devised by Cyrille Boyer and colleagues at the University of New South Wales, the excited electron is donated to a monomer, generating a radical, which then goes on to further react and generate polymers through a process known as living radical polymerisation.

Read the full article in Chemistry World»

Read the original journal article in Chemical Science – it’s free to access:
Utilizing the electron transfer mechanism of chlorophyll a under light for controlled radical polymerization
Sivaprakash Shanmugam, Jiangtao Xu and Cyrille Boyer  
Chem. Sci., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4SC03342F, Edge Article

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