1st International Conference on Noncovalent Interactions

Kamran T. Mahmudov *ab and Armando J. L. Pombeiro *a
aCentro de Química Estrutural, Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade de Lisboa, Av. Rovisco Pais, 1049-001 Lisbon, Portugal. E-mail: pombeiro@tecnico.ulisboa.pt
bDepartment of Chemistry, Baku State University, Z. Xalilov Str. 23, Az 1148 Baku, Azerbaijan. E-mail: kamran_chem@mail.ru; kamran_chem@yahoo.com

Received 5th August 2019 , Accepted 5th August 2019
Inter- and intramolecular noncovalent interactions are fundamental aspects of chemical and biological processes, and can provide a backbone for biomolecular and material structures. These weak forces were first considered by van der Waals in 1873 when adapting the ideal gas equation of state for real gases,1 and follow a broad range of classifications depending on their nature, origin and strength: hydrogen, noble gases, halogen, chalcogen, pnictogen, tetrel and triel bonds, as well as cation–π, anion–π, lone pair–π, π–π stacking, agostic, pseudo-agostic, anagostic, dispersion-driven, lipophilic, etc. An in-depth understanding and control of these weak interactions may provide new opportunities in the design of efficient catalysts, functional materials, drugs, etc.

As the field of noncovalent interactions has grown intensively in recent decades, several books have been published by Wiley,2 the Royal Society of Chemistry,3 Elsevier,4 Oxford University Press5 and Springer,6 and several thematic issues on these weak forces have appeared in Chemical Reviews in 1988, 1994, 2000 and 2016.7

Hydrogen and halogen bonds have already been defined by IUPAC (Recommendations 2011 and 2013, respectively),8,9 and the definitions for chalcogen, pnictogen and tetrel bonds are in progress.10 Moreover, international conferences/symposia on Supramolecular Chemistry and particular types of noncovalent interactions have been organized, such as the International Conference on “Horizons in Hydrogen Bond Research” (established by Prof. Lucjan Sobczyk in Poland in 1977), the International Symposium on Halogen Bonding [established by Prof. Pierangelo Metrangolo and Prof. Giuseppe Resnati in Porto Cesareo (Lecce, Italy) in 2014], etc.

Thus, the chemistry of this century is expected to largely involve noncovalent interactions, and it is timely to establish a general/regular series of International Conferences on Noncovalent Interactions (ICNI), with the first one being held on 2–6 September 2019 in Lisbon: https://icni2019.eventos.chemistry.pt/#page-top

Further conferences within this series will follow every two years, in odd number years (2021, 2023, etc.). The International Advisory Board members of ICNI are well recognized scientists in this field,11 representing Europe, Asia, Africa and America (Table 1). ICNI has already been recognized by IUPAC for endorsement, although without financial support.12

Table 1 International Advisory Board
Prof. Elangannan Arunan Indian Institute of Science, India
Prof. Dario Braga University of Bologna, Italy
Prof. Pierre Braunstein University of Strasbourg, France
Prof. Antonio Caballero Universidad de Murcia, Spain
Prof. Jean-Francois Carpentier CNRS-Université de Rennes 1, France
Prof. Scott L. Cockroft University of Edinburgh, UK
Prof. Debbie C. Crans Colorado State University, USA
Prof. Jean-Pierre Djukic University of Strasbourg, France
Prof. M. Teresa Duarte University of Lisbon, Portugal
Prof. Catharine Esterhuysen Stellenbosch University, South Africa
Prof. Antonio Frontera Universitat de les Illes Balears, Spain
Prof. Philip A. Gale University of Sydney, Australia
Prof. Michael K. Gilson University of California San Diego, USA
Prof. Fabrizia Grepioni University of Bologna, Italy
Prof. M. Fátima C. Guedes da Silva University of Lisbon, Portugal
Prof. Akira Harada Osaka University, Japan
Prof. Matti Haukka University of Jyvaskyla, Finland
Prof. Pavel Hobza Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Czech Republic
Prof. Feihe Huang Zhejiang University, China
Prof. Wei Jun Jin Beijing Normal University, China
Prof. Susumu Kitagawa Kyoto University, Japan
Dr Maximilian N. Kopylovich University of Lisbon, Portugal
Prof. Vadim Yu. Kukushkin Saint Petersburg State University, Russian Federation
Prof. Yu Liu Nankai University, China
Prof. Jan Lundell University of Jyvaskyla, Finland
Prof. Abel M. Maharramov Baku State University, Azerbaijan
Dr Kamran T. Mahmudov University of Lisbon, Portugal
Prof. Stefan Matile University of Geneva, Switzerland
Prof. Pierangelo Metrangolo Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Prof. Marta E. G. Mosquera Universidad de Alcala, Spain
Prof. Djamaladdin G. Musaev Emory University, USA
Prof. Dana Nachtigallova Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Czech Republic
Prof. G. Narahari Sastry CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, India
Prof. Werner M. Nau Jacobs University Bremen, Germany
Prof. Armando J. L. Pombeiro University of Lisbon, Portugal
Prof. Giuseppe Resnati Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Prof. Steve Scheiner Utah State University, USA
Prof. Hans-Jörg Schneider Organische Chemie der Universität des Saarlandes, Germany
Prof. Elena S. Shubina Russian Academy of Sciences, Russian Federation
Prof. Anthony Stone University of Cambridge, UK
Prof. Edward R. T. Tiekink Sunway University, Malaysia
Prof. F. Dean Toste University of California, USA
Prof. Leyong Wang Nanjing University, China
Prof. Andrew S. Weller University of Oxford, UK
Prof. Steven E. Wheeler University of Georgia, USA
Prof. Snežana D. Zarić University of Belgrade, Serbia

The conference aims to highlight the role of noncovalent interactions in synthesis, catalysis, crystal engineering, molecular recognition, medicinal chemistry, biology, materials science, electrochemical immobilization, etc., also including theoretical aspects. All approaches are considered, from fundamental to applied ones, including discussion of new types of noncovalent interactions (noble gases, halogen, chalcogen, pnictogen, tetrel and triel bonds) and multidisciplinary studies.

Due to the broad/multidisciplinary character of noncovalent interactions, we proposed establishing a themed collection (named “1st International Conference on Noncovalent Interactions”) to be published in various RSC journals. The selected topics reflect the current trends in weak bonding chemistry. Each article is peer reviewed as for regular submissions.

We believe that the material covered herein will be instructive to researchers, students and newcomers in the fields of noncovalent chemistry and related interdisciplinary subjects.

Finally, we warmly thank the participating authors and the reviewers for their contributions, and Dr Mike Andrews (RSC) for his help with organizing this themed collection.


  1. J. D. van der Waals, Over de Continuïteit van den Gas-en Vloeistoftoestand (On the continuity of the gaseous and liquid state), PhD dissertation, University of Leiden, 1873 Search PubMed.
  2. (a) Noncovalent interactions in the synthesis and design of new compounds, ed. A. M. Maharramov, K. T. Mahmudov, M. N. Kopylovich and A. J. L. Pombeiro, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 2016 Search PubMed; (b) Hydrogen bonding in organic synthesis, ed. P. M. Pihko, Wiley-VCH, Weinheim, 2009 Search PubMed.
  3. (a) Noncovalent interactions in catalysis, ed. K. T. Mahmudov, M. N. Kopylovich, M. F. C. Guedes da Silva and A. J. L. Pombeiro, Royal Society of Chemistry, UK, 2019 Search PubMed; (b) Understanding intermolecular interactions in the solid state: approaches and techniques, ed. D. Chopra, Royal Society of Chemistry, UK, 2018 Search PubMed; (c) P. Hobza and K. Müller-Dethlefs, Noncovalent interactions: theory and experiment, Royal Society of Chemistry, UK, 2010 Search PubMed.
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  8. E. Arunan, G. R. Desiraju, R. A. Klein, J. Sadlej, S. Scheiner, I. Alkorta, D. C. Clary, R. H. Crabtree, J. J. Dannenberg, P. Hobza, H. G. Kjaergaard, A. C. Legon, B. Mennucci and D. J. Nesbitt, Pure Appl. Chem., 2011, 83, 1637 CAS.
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  10. (a) IUPAC Workshop@ISXB-3, Interactions Involving Group 14–16 Elements as Electrophilic Sites: A World Parallel to Halogen Bond, 9th–10th June 2018, Greenville, SC, USA; (b) G. Cavallo, P. Metrangolo, T. Pilati, G. Resnati and G. Terraneo, Cryst. Growth Des., 2014, 14, 2697 CrossRef CAS; (c) P. Scilabra, G. Terraneo and G. Resnati, Acc. Chem. Res., 2019, 52, 1313 CAS; (d) https://iupac.org/definition-of-the-chalcogen-bond/ .
  11. http://icni2019.eventos.chemistry.pt/ .
  12. https://iupac.org/event/1st-international-conference-on-noncovalent-interactions-icni/ .

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