Volume 1 Issue 6 June 2017

Volume 1 Issue 6

Protein–protein interactions help synaptic vesicles bind the cell membrane, to which they fuse prior to releasing their neurotransmitter cargo. Several analytical techniques allow one to probe the nature of the macromolecules involved, as well as the small molecules delivered between cells. Among these techniques is electrochemistry: pictured here is an electrode placed outside the fusion pore, poised to sense dopamine in the form of anodic current signals.

See  Phan, N. T. N., Li, X. & Ewing, A. G. Nat. Rev. Chem. 1, 0048 (2017).

Image: Rachael Tremlett and David Schilter Design: Rachael Tremlett

Research Highlights

Comments and Opinion

  • In the Classroom |

    Experienced practitioners often feel that studying chemistry was harder during their time at school, but is this really true?

    • Kristy Turner

Research

  • Review Article |

    Synaptic vesicles participate in neuronal communication by storing and releasing neurotransmitter molecules. The neurotransmitters can be detected using electrochemistry and mass spectrometry, and vesicle structural elements can be detected by super-resolution microscopy. This Review describes these analytical techniques and how they unravel the mechanisms of cell communication.

    • Nhu T. N. Phan
    • , Xianchan Li
    •  & Andrew G. Ewing
  • Review Article |

    Although it is a fundamental property of many small molecules, chirality is not widely exploited in materials applications as its benefits are not widely recognized — indeed, the need for stereoselective synthesis may be seen as a disadvantage. In this Review, we highlight recent research in which chirality has had an enabling impact in technological applications.

    • Jochen R. Brandt
    • , Francesco Salerno
    •  & Matthew J. Fuchter
  • Review Article |

    Many methods exist for the recycling of plastic solid waste. Chemical recycling, which can take many forms from high-temperature pyrolysis to mild, solution-based catalytic depolymerization, can afford enormous economic and environmental benefits. This Review covers the state of the art in chemical recycling and the design of high-performance polymers amenable to such processes.

    • AliReza Rahimi
    •  & Jeannette M. García