Chiral J-aggregates formed by achiral cyanine dyes

S Kirstein, H von Berlepsch, C Böttcher, C Burger, A Ouart, G Reck, S Dähne
Chemphyschem: a European Journal of Chemical Physics and Physical Chemistry 2000 November 3, 1 (3): 146-50
The self-assembly of helical supramolecular structures from chiral building units is a basic principle of biological materials. The mesoscopic structure of a chiral molecular aggregate, which formed spontaneously from a nonchiral J-aggregating cyanine dye in aqueous solution, is presented. In single crystals (as shown in the picture) a coexistance of planar molecules with left- and right-handed twisted conformers of the same dye are found; the latter may act as templates to build up the helical superstructures.

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