Stabilizing ligands make nanoclusters brighter

Metal nanoclusters that bear tunable surface ligands could help develop next-generation imaging and photocatalytic approaches, suggests work by KAUST researchers.

Antibiotics from the sea

The team led by Prof. Christian Jogler of Friedrich Schiller University, Jena, has succeeded in cultivating several dozen marine bacteria in the laboratory—bacteria that had previously been paid little attention. The researchers ...

New polymer releases molecular cargo in response to force

Caltech scientists have developed a new kind of polymer that can carry a chemical payload as part of its molecular structure and release it in response to mechanical stress. The chemical system they have developed could one ...

Affordable and mobile purification of dialysis water

People who suffer from end stage renal desease frequently undergo dialysis on a fixed schedule. For patients this artificial washing of the blood is a major burden. To remove toxins from the blood, large quantities of dialysis ...

Glycans found binding to mammalian RNA

A team of researchers at Stanford University has found evidence of glycans binding with mammalian RNA. The group has written a paper describing their findings and have posted it on the bioRxiv preprint server.

A blue pigment found to be a high-performance ammonia adsorbent

Akira Takahashi (Researcher) and institutional collaborators have discovered that the blue pigment Prussian blue has a higher adsorption capacity than common ammonia adsorbents, and controlled the structure of Prussian blue ...

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Small molecule

In pharmacology and biochemistry, a small molecule is an organic compound that is not a polymer. Biopolymers such as nucleic acids, proteins, and polysaccharides (such as starch or cellulose) are not small molecules, although their constituent monomers—ribo- or deoxyribonucleotides, amino acids, and monosaccharides, respectively—are often considered to be. Very small oligomers are also usually considered small molecules, such as dinucleotides, peptides such as the antioxidant glutathione, and disaccharides such as sucrose.

While small molecules almost always have a lower molecular weight than biopolymers, a very small protein with a defined fold, such as the artificial ten-amino-acid protein chignolin[1], can indeed be smaller than some exceptionally large small molecules such as triglycerides.

Small molecules can have a variety of biological functions, serving as cell signalling molecules, as tools in molecular biology, as drugs in medicine, and in countless other roles. These compounds can be natural (such as secondary metabolites) or artificial (such as antiviral drugs); they may have a beneficial effect against a disease (such as FDA approved drugs) or may be detrimental (such as teratogens and carcinogens).

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