Transmembrane nanopores from porphyrin supramolecules

J Am Chem Soc. 2008 May 21;130(20):6314-5. doi: 10.1021/ja801129a. Epub 2008 Apr 26.


A porphyrin-based nanopore was constructed through a bilayer lipid membrane (BLM). The macrocyclic porphyrin (the inner diameter = ca. 2.1 nm) having six carboxylic acid groups directed up and down was synthesized by self-assembly of three trisporphyrins, metathesis linking, and subsequent hydrolysis. The porphyrin was incorporated into soybean lecithin based BLM, and the ion currents through the nanopore were observed under 500 mM KCl, LiCl, CaCl2, and tetraalkylammonium chloride solutions, indicating formation of a large pore through BLM. Blocking of the ion current was achieved by addition of the polycationic fourth-generation PAMAM dendrimer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Carboxylic Acids / chemistry
  • Dendrimers
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Ion Channels / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Ion Channels / chemistry
  • Lipid Bilayers / chemistry*
  • Nanostructures / chemistry*
  • Plant Lectins / chemistry
  • Polyamines / chemistry
  • Porphyrins / chemistry*
  • Soybean Proteins / chemistry


  • Carboxylic Acids
  • Dendrimers
  • Ion Channels
  • Lipid Bilayers
  • PAMAM Starburst
  • Plant Lectins
  • Polyamines
  • Porphyrins
  • Soybean Proteins
  • soybean lectin