Halogen bonding for molecular recognition: new developments in materials and biological sciences
Two decades ago, halogen bonding attracted considerable attention as a new type of non-covalent interaction and has now emerged as an important supramolecular tool for crystal engineering, demonstrating its ability to self-assemble low affinity entities. Specific features of halogen bonds have been subsequently harnessed in biological and material sciences to give rise to elegant functional systems with a wide range of applications. In this highlight, we focused on new concepts in polymer science, electrochemistry, electronic and sensing materials. Recent findings on the use of halogenated compounds for transmembrane transport are also discussed, together with a short summary of the current understanding of the nature of the halogen bond, in the light of modern computational tools and energy decomposition.