Wavelength-selective cleavage of photoprotecting groups: strategies and applications in dynamic systems
Photocleavable protecting groups (PPGs) are extensively used in chemical and biological sciences. In their application, advantage is taken of using light as an external, non-invasive stimulus, which can be delivered with very high spatiotemporal precision. More recently, orthogonally addressing multiple PPGs, in a single system and with different wavelengths of light, has been explored. This approach allows one to independently control multiple functionalities in an external, non-invasive fashion. In this tutorial review, we discuss the design principles for dynamic systems involving wavelength-selective deprotection, focusing on the choice and optimization of PPGs, synthetic methods for their introduction and strategies for combining multiple PPGs into one system. Finally, we illustrate the design principles with representative examples, aiming at providing the reader with an instructive overview on how the wavelength-selective cleavage of photoprotecting groups can be applied in materials science, organic synthesis and biological systems.