Université de Strasbourg

Adrian-Mihail Stadler


Institute of Supramolecular Science and Engineering (ISIS), University of Strasbourg and CNRS

Adrian-Mihail Stadler, USIAS Fellow 2018

Dr. Adrian-Mihail Stadler is currently a CNRS (the French National Centre for Scientific Research) researcher at the Supramolecular Science and Engineering Institute (ISIS) of the University of Strasbourg, and a project leader at the Institute of Nanotechnology (INT) of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). He studied chemistry at the universities of Bucharest, Paris XI, and Strasbourg, as well as law at the universities of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne and Strasbourg. He carried out his PhD in chemistry (2004) with Professor Jean-Marie Lehn, in Strasbourg, for which he was awarded the Sigma-Aldrich Prize of the French Chemical Society and a prize from Strasbourg’s Louis-Pasteur University. He obtained the French "habilitation à diriger des recherches" (an accreditation to supervise research) in 2014.

His research interests include supramolecular chemistry, coordination chemistry, dynamic chemistry, molecular machines and devices, dendrimers and history of chemistry (of Strasbourg and Alsace in particular).

Project - Molecular machines with multiple mechanical functions

November 2018 - October 2020

The importance of, and interest for, the field of molecular machines were recently confirmed through the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2016 that was granted to Jean-Pierre Sauvage, Sir J. Fraser Stoddart and Bernard L. Feringa. Molecular machines include molecules or supramolecular assemblies that can accomplish a stimuli-triggered motion (motional function) of significant amplitude or defined sense/direction. Introduction of such devices in polymers should generate polymeric motional devices with novel mechanical properties and interesting applications. As a potential example, one could imagine a contractile stimuli-responsive biocompatible polymer that could replace or repair damaged muscular tissues.

In this captivating field that is in continuous evolution, most molecular machines can only accomplish one kind of motional function. In order to explore new materials and tools, and to provide them with versatility and functional mobility, we hereby propose molecular machines of polymeric nature that would be able to perform several types of stimuli-induced motions. Within the present project - at the interface of coordination chemistry, molecular machines, polymer chemistry and constitutional dynamic chemistry - we plan to put this concept into practice in two ways:

a) Through covalent polymerisation and constitutional exchange. This approach has two steps. In the first step the polymerisation of a molecular machine via its appropriate functionalisation should occur, followed by its reaction with a suitable spacer. One of the candidates is a molecular machine (A) that we recently developed and that can carry out two types of metal-ion-induced pH-triggered motional functions (a contraction of a linear strand into a Z-like structure, and a change of the height of that Z). A supplementary molecular machine (B) that accomplishes a new type of motion (for example, a cis-trans isomerisation) and responds to other stimuli (light) is introduced in the second step. This step consists of a chemical exchange where the units of machine A from the polymer are replaced, under apropriate conditions, by those of machine B. In this way and under a reversible exchange, it would be possible to generate from the same chemical system a polymeric molecular machine of which the constitution can be changed (by incorporating one or another type of molecular machines), and that could, consequently, accomplish multiple mechanical functions. Moreover, other properties (especially physical) of the polymer could be modulated through the nature of the spacer.

b) Through covalent copolymerisation of two types of molecular machines. The two above-mentioned mechanical devices A and B could be functionalised (for example, with aldehydes and amines, or with dienes and dienophiles), in order to act as comonomers. Their reaction should produce a copolymer that performs the three types of motions mentioned earlier.

Investissements d'Avenir