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New Perspectives for the Design of Molecular Actuators: Thermally Induced Collapse of Single Macromolecules from Cylindrical Brushes to Spheres


  • Financial support by the Fond der Chemischen Industrie, the BMBF (FKZ: 03N6500) and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft is gratefully acknowledged.


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Polymethacrylates with densely grafted poly-N-isopropylacrylamide side chains change their shape at the lower critical solution temperature from cylindrical brushes (left) to spherical structures (right). This is an interesting example of a temperature-induced cylinder-to-sphere transition observed for single macromolecules.

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