Synthesis of rotaxanes and catenanes using an imine clipping reaction
Supramolecular chemistry and self-assembly provide a valuable chance to understand the complicated topological structures on a molecular level. Two types of classical mechanically interlocked molecules, rotaxanes and catenanes, possess non-covalent mechanical bonds and have attracted more attention not only in supramolecular chemistry but also in the fields of materials science, nanotechnology and bioscience. In the past decades, the template-directed clipping reaction based on imine chemistry has become one of the most efficient methods for the construction of functionalized rotaxanes and catenanes. In this review, we outlined the main progress of rotaxanes and catenanes using the template-directed clipping approach of imine chemistry. The review contains the novel topological structures of rotaxanes and catenanes, functions and applications.