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Issue 5, 2019
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MOFs have demonstrated outstanding properties for the protection and controlled release of different bio-entities, from proteins to living cells. Carbohydrates, as pure molecules or as a component of proteins and cells, perform essential biological functions. Thus, an understanding of the role of carbohydrates in the formation of MOF-based bio-composites will facilitate their application to biotechnology and medicine. Here, we investigate the role of carbohydrate molecular weight and chemical functionalization in the formation of carbohydrate@MOF composites. We find that chemical functionalization, such as carboxylation, that leads to an enhancement of metal cation concentration at the surface of the molecule triggers the rapid self-assembly of the MOF material, zeolitic-imidazolate framework 8 (ZIF-8). Furthermore, we determine the encapsulation efficiency and measure the release properties of the carbohydrate under controlled conditions. Our findings show that MOFs can be used to prepare a new class of biocomposites for the delivery of carbohydrate-based therapeutics.

Graphical abstract: Carbohydrates@MOFs

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Article information

16 Dec 2018
20 Feb 2019
First published
20 Feb 2019

This article is Open Access

Mater. Horiz., 2019,6, 969-977
Article type


E. Astria, M. Thonhofer, R. Ricco, W. Liang, A. Chemelli, A. Tarzia, K. Alt, C. E. Hagemeyer, J. Rattenberger, H. Schroettner, T. Wrodnigg, H. Amenitsch, D. M. Huang, C. J. Doonan and P. Falcaro, Mater. Horiz., 2019, 6, 969
DOI: 10.1039/C8MH01611A

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