Polymer chemistry articles from across Nature Portfolio

Polymer chemistry is the study of the synthesis, characterization and properties of polymer molecules or macromolecules, which are large molecules composed of repeating chemical subunits known as monomers.


Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research |

    We investigated the effect of the hydrophobicity of the side chains of mixed-charge polymers on their interaction with cancer cell membranes. Six pH-responsive mixed-charge polymeric micelles consisting of cationic, anionic, and neutral moieties were created, with differences in hydrophobicity generated by altering the type of anionic monomer and the ratio of the hydrophobic spacer moiety. Evaluation of their affinity for cell membranes revealed that increases in the hydrophobicity and pH-responsive nature led to pH-selective toxicity, which was assumed to be caused by the disruption of cell membrane integrity.

    • Yubuki Nakamura
    • , Marina Nasu
    •  & Yuki Hiruta
  • Research
    | Open Access

    Reversals are structural motifs found in helical polymers that are difficult to determine experimentally. Here, the authors turn to photochemical electrocyclization as a tool to establish their presence and estimate excess screw sense in solution.

    • Francisco Rey-Tarrío
    • , Rafael Rodríguez
    •  & Félix Freire
  • Research |

    Controlled radical polymerization of fluorinated monomers typically synthesizes fluoropolymers of limited molecular weights with poor control. Now the controlled copolymerization of various fluoroalkenes under ambient conditions is reported by combining a redox-relay pathway and thermally activated delayed fluorescence catalysis.

    • Yucheng Zhao
    • , Yufei Chen
    •  & Mao Chen
  • Research |

    Distannylated dithiazologermole and germaindacenodithiazole were copolymerized with dibrominated benzothiadiazole and di(thiazolyl)benzothiadiazole to produce four new donor-acceptor conjugated copolymers. The optical, electrochemical, and thermal properties of the copolymers were characterized. DFT calculations revealed that these thiazole-containing copolymers possessed lower HOMOs and LUMOs than those of thiophene-based congeners, in accordance with the experimental results. The intramolecular noncovalent S‒N and N‒H bond interactions and the effects of the bridging atom (C or Ge) on the HOMO and LUMO energy levels were also suggested by the DFT calculations.

    • Weipeng Sun
    • , Yohei Adachi
    •  & Joji Ohshita
  • Reviews |

    Analytes can be ionized and brought into the gas phase using electrospray ionization (ESI). Coupling ESI with mass spectrometry enables a wide range of molecules to be studied, including proteins and polymers. This Primer introduces the ESI method, describing the underlying mechanism, common variants and instrument setups.

    • Gurpur Rakesh D. Prabhu
    • , Evan R. Williams
    •  & Pawel L. Urban

News and Comment

  • News & Views |

    Informatics approaches play an increasingly important role in accelerating the advances of modern materials science. A recent study reports the development of predictive machine learning models to guide the de novo design of through-space charge transfer polymers with full-colour-tunable emission.

    • Xiaolin Liu
    • , Chunlei Zhu
    •  & Ben Zhong Tang
  • Research Highlights |

    An article in Nature Communications reports a solvent-free electronic material that is as soft as biological tissue like the brain.

    • Ariane Vartanian
  • News & Views |

    Mechanical force has recently become a new tool for chemists to create colours, trigger reactions, and develop advanced fabrication techniques not possible using other methods. Force-induced multiple colouring has now been developed as a printing technique in soft lithography, enabling the colouring of polymeric materials without inks.

    • Xiaocun Lu
    Nature Chemistry 15, 303-305