Well-defined, organic nanoenvironments in water: the hydrophobic effect drives a capsular assembly

J Am Chem Soc. 2004 Sep 22;126(37):11408-9. doi: 10.1021/ja0475611.


The synthesis of a water-soluble, deep-cavity cavitand is reported. A blend of molecular curvature and amphiphilicity, this molecule has a hydrophobic concave surface and a hydrophilic convex surface. As a result, in aqueous solution and in the presence of a guest molecule, the host self-assembles to form a capsular assembly with an interior cavity large enough to entrap steroidal guests.