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Molecular Motors, powering dynamic functional molecular systems

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






Project "MMDYNASYS" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: Broerstraat 5
postcode: 9712CP

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Netherlands [NL]
 Project website
 Total cost 2˙499˙524 €
 EC max contribution 2˙499˙524 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2015-AdG
 Funding Scheme ERC-ADG
 Starting year 2016
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2016-09-01   to  2021-08-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

In this proposal the unique properties of unidirectional light driven molecular rotary motors will be built upon to achieve dynamic control of function and develop responsive systems with a particular focus on systems in water. Light-driven molecular rotary motors are distinct from the majority of molecular switches, as they allow sequential access to multiple functional states in a responsive system through non-invasive stimulation. Importantly, continuous irradiation induces continuous rotary motion which provides a unique opportunity to design dynamic systems and responsive materials that can be driven out-of-equilibrium. The research program is divided in four work-packages: a) chemical and redox driven unidirectional motors; here we will develop processive unidirectional motors that can use (electro)chemical energy in a continuous manner, b) amplification of motion; here rotary motors operate in assemblies to amplify mechanical function over a wide range of length scales. Specifically we will use liquid crystal-water interfaces as a unique platform to control motion and organization. c) dissipative self-assembly: molecular motors offer fantastic opportunities to control self-assembly and drive such systems out-of-equilibrium. We aim at metastable aggregate formation (hydrogels) and the design of amphiphilic motors for responsive self-assembled nanostructures; d)triggering biomolecular function; the goal is to use rotary motors to regulate DNA transcription and ultimately as genuine powering device to control cardiac cell function. In the emerging field of photopharmacology, we take advantage of non-invasive high spatio-temporal control that switching with light provides. The proposed research program is highly challenging but provides the comprehensive effort required to achieve control of complex nanomechanical systems and will opening a bright future for applications ranging from stimuli responsive materials to spatio-temporal control of biomolecular systems


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2017 Michael Wegener, Mickel J. Hansen, Arnold J. M. Driessen, Wiktor Szymanski, Ben L. Feringa
Photocontrol of Antibacterial Activity: Shifting from UV to Red Light Activation
published pages: 17979-17986, ISSN: 0002-7863, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b09281
Journal of the American Chemical Society 139/49 2020-03-20
2017 Bartosz Krajnik, Jiawen Chen, Matthew A. Watson, Scott L. Cockroft, Ben L. Feringa, Johan Hofkens
Defocused Imaging of UV-Driven Surface-Bound Molecular Motors
published pages: 7156-7159, ISSN: 0002-7863, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b02758
Journal of the American Chemical Society 139/21 2020-03-20
2017 Thomas van Leeuwen, G. Henrieke Heideman, Depeng Zhao, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
In situ control of polymer helicity with a non-covalently bound photoresponsive molecular motor dopant
published pages: 6393-6396, ISSN: 1359-7345, DOI: 10.1039/c7cc03188b
Chem. Commun. 53/48 2020-03-20
2017 Tao Yan, Ben L. Feringa, Katalin Barta
Direct N-alkylation of unprotected amino acids with alcohols
published pages: eaao6494, ISSN: 2375-2548, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aao6494
Science Advances 3/12 2020-03-20
2018 Diederik Roke, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Molecular rotary motors: Unidirectional motion around double bonds
published pages: 9423-9431, ISSN: 0027-8424, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1712784115
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 115/38 2020-03-20
2017 Jiří Kaleta, Jiawen Chen, Guillaume Bastien, Martin Dračínský, Milan Mašát, Charles T. Rogers, Ben L. Feringa, Josef Michl
Surface Inclusion of Unidirectional Molecular Motors in Hexagonal Tris( o -phenylene)cyclotriphosphazene
published pages: 10486-10498, ISSN: 0002-7863, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b05404
Journal of the American Chemical Society 139/30 2020-03-20
2018 Jiawen Chen, Jérôme Vachon, Ben L. Feringa
Design, Synthesis, and Isomerization Studies of Light-Driven Molecular Motors for Single Molecular Imaging
published pages: 6025-6034, ISSN: 0022-3263, DOI: 10.1021/acs.joc.8b00654
The Journal of Organic Chemistry 83/11 2020-03-20
2017 Thomas van Leeuwen, Anouk S. Lubbe, Peter Å tacko, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Dynamic control of function by light-driven molecular motors
published pages: 96, ISSN: 2397-3358, DOI: 10.1038/s41570-017-0096
Nature Reviews Chemistry 1/12 2020-03-20
2017 Jos C. M. Kistemaker, Peter Å tacko, Diederik Roke, Alexander T. Wolters, G. Henrieke Heideman, Mu-Chieh Chang, Pieter van der Meulen, Johan Visser, Edwin Otten, Ben L. Feringa
Third-Generation Light-Driven Symmetric Molecular Motors
published pages: 9650-9661, ISSN: 0002-7863, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b04412
Journal of the American Chemical Society 139/28 2020-03-20
2018 Thomas van Leeuwen, Wojciech Danowski, Stefano F. Pizzolato, Peter Štacko, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Braking of a Light-Driven Molecular Rotary Motor by Chemical Stimuli
published pages: 81-84, ISSN: 0947-6539, DOI: 10.1002/chem.201704747
Chemistry - A European Journal 24/1 2020-03-20
2017 Anouk S. Lubbe, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Artificial microtubules burst with energy
published pages: 11804-11805, ISSN: 0027-8424, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1716868114
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 114/45 2020-03-20
2018 Anouk S. Lubbe, Qing Liu, Sanne J. Smith, Jan Willem de Vries, Jos C. M. Kistemaker, Alex H. de Vries, Ignacio Faustino, Zhuojun Meng, Wiktor Szymanski, Andreas Herrmann, Ben L. Feringa
Photoswitching of DNA Hybridization Using a Molecular Motor
published pages: 5069-5076, ISSN: 0002-7863, DOI: 10.1021/jacs.7b09476
Journal of the American Chemical Society 140/15 2020-03-20
2017 Thomas van Leeuwen, Wojciech Danowski, Edwin Otten, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Asymmetric Synthesis of Second-Generation Light-Driven Molecular Motors
published pages: 5027-5033, ISSN: 0022-3263, DOI: 10.1021/acs.joc.7b00852
The Journal of Organic Chemistry 82/10 2020-03-20
2017 Peter Å tacko, Jos C. M. Kistemaker, Thomas van Leeuwen, Mu-Chieh Chang, Edwin Otten, Ben L. Feringa
Locked synchronous rotor motion in a molecular motor
published pages: 964-968, ISSN: 0036-8075, DOI: 10.1126/science.aam8808
Science 356/6341 2020-03-20
2018 Christopher R. Hall, Wesley R. Browne, Ben L. Feringa, Stephen R. Meech
Mapping the Excited-State Potential Energy Surface of a Photomolecular Motor
published pages: 6203-6207, ISSN: 1433-7851, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201802126
Angewandte Chemie International Edition 57/21 2020-03-20
2018 Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Supramolecularly directed rotary motion in a photoresponsive receptor
published pages: , ISSN: 2041-1723, DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-04249-x
Nature Communications 9/1 2020-03-20
2017 Thomas van Leeuwen, Jasper Pol, Diederik Roke, Sander J. Wezenberg, Ben L. Feringa
Visible-Light Excitation of a Molecular Motor with an Extended Aromatic Core
published pages: 1402-1405, ISSN: 1523-7060, DOI: 10.1021/acs.orglett.7b00317
Organic Letters 19/6 2020-03-20
2017 Salma Kassem, Thomas van Leeuwen, Anouk S. Lubbe, Miriam R. Wilson, Ben L. Feringa, David A. Leigh
Artificial molecular motors
published pages: 2592-2621, ISSN: 0306-0012, DOI: 10.1039/c7cs00245a
Chemical Society Reviews 46/9 2020-03-20

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