Microscopic origin of chiral shape induction in achiral crystals

Xiao, Wende; Ernst, Karl-Heinz; Palotas, Krisztian; Zhang, Yuyang; Bruyer, Emilie; Peng, Lingqing; Greber, Thomas; Hofer, Werner A.; Scott, Lawrence T.; Fasel, Roman (2016). Microscopic origin of chiral shape induction in achiral crystals. Nature chemistry, 8(4), pp. 326-330. Nature Publishing Group 10.1038/nchem.2449

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In biomineralization, inorganic materials are formed with remarkable control of the shape and morphology. Chirality, as present in the biomolecular world, is therefore also common for biominerals. Biomacromolecules, like proteins and polysaccharides, are in direct contact with the mineral phase and act as modifiers during nucleation and crystal growth. Owing to their homochirality--they exist only as one of two possible mirror-symmetric isomers--their handedness is often transferred into the macroscopic shape of the biomineral crystals, but the way in which handedness is transmitted into achiral materials is not yet understood at the atomic level. By using the submolecular resolution capability of scanning tunnelling microscopy, supported by photoelectron diffraction and density functional theory, we show how the chiral 'buckybowl' hemibuckminsterfullerene arranges copper surface atoms in its vicinity into a chiral morphology. We anticipate that such new insight will find its way into materials synthesis techniques.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Departement of Chemistry and Biochemistry

UniBE Contributor:

Fasel, Roman

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
500 Science > 540 Chemistry
500 Science > 530 Physics

ISSN:

1755-4330

Publisher:

Nature Publishing Group

Language:

English

Submitter:

Roman Fasel

Date Deposited:

04 Jan 2017 15:53

Last Modified:

06 Jan 2017 12:49

Publisher DOI:

10.1038/nchem.2449

PubMed ID:

27001727

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.90573

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/90573

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