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Building big molecules bottom-up

Chemists make ring structures on the scale of biological machinery

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2:51pm, January 5, 2011

Just tossing mortar and bricks together won’t yield a tidy structure, but chemists must often resort to similar measures when building molecules the size of proteins, the workhorses of cells. Now researchers have developed a cleaner strategy for constructing such compounds. By employing one kind of molecule as a template, scientists can string together small biologically important molecules into larger ringed structures with unprecedented precision and no mess, a team reports in the Jan. 6 Nature.

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