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Volume 8 Issue 6, June 2023

Monolayer-protected metal clusters are versatile nanomaterials that can be engineered, in principle, with atomic precision. The cover illustrates how these materials can be iteratively designed and understood through a tight interplay between in silico and experimental approaches. See María Francisca Matus & Hannu Häkkinen

Image: María Francisca Matus. Cover design: Charlotte Gurr.


  • High-performance ferroelectric materials are used in many applications, ranging from actuators to capacitors. Now, high entropy is emerging as an effective and flexible strategy for enhancing the physical properties of ferroelectrics via the delicate design of local polarization configurations.

    • He Qi
    • Liang Chen
    • Jun Chen


  • Progress in biomimetics allows for the fabrication of man-made materials and surfaces with properties similar to biological ones. These advancements enable the development of a new generation of building materials for architecture that have remarkable properties typically unachievable with a traditional approach.

    • Anna Sandak
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Research Highlights

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  • Solution-processable semiconductors based on small molecules, polymers or halide perovskites combine sustainable manufacturing with exceptional optoelectronic properties that can be chemically tailored to achieve flexible and highly efficient optoelectronic and photonic devices. A new exciting research direction is the study of the influence of chirality on light–matter interactions in these soft materials and its exploitation for the simultaneous control of charge, spin and light. In this Viewpoint, researchers working on different types of chiral semiconductors discuss the most interesting directions in this rapidly expanding field.

    • Jeanne Crassous
    • Matthew J. Fuchter
    • Sascha Feldmann
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  • Monolayer-protected metal clusters are a unique class of versatile, atomically precise nanomaterials that have drawn attention in diverse areas of materials science owing to their molecular-like properties. This Review discusses how understanding these properties through tightly connected experimental and computational investigations can strengthen their impact from catalysis to biomedical applications.

    • María Francisca Matus
    • Hannu Häkkinen
    Review Article
  • Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are lipid-bound nanoscale mediators of intercellular communication. This Review discusses EVs in the context of the extracellular matrix, highlighting how the understanding of their interactions inspires materials design to control the release, retention and production of EVs for various biological and therapeutic applications.

    • Koushik Debnath
    • Kevin Las Heras
    • Jae-Won Shin
    Review Article
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  • Engineered materials with intrinsic chirality can affect biological processes from cell uptake to nerve repair. This Perspective article discusses the design and function of intrinsically chiral carbon dots, metal-based materials and patterned geometries, highlighting the different effects of the two enantiomers on biological responses.

    • Baojin Ma
    • Alberto Bianco
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