Post Date
Jul 7 2021

Designing Reprogrammable Chemicals and Materials

MOF (Metal Organic Framework) is the name of the game here. This unique group of compounds, that look like tiny spheres trapped inside a cube-shaped frame, exhibit the extraordinary ability to be reprogrammed and therefore be reused once a chemical reaction is over. Dr. Basit Yameen, Associate Professor at the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at SBASSE, along with his team of researchers herald the age of chemicals and materials that are programmable to the wishes of the chemist.

Co-led by Dr. Basit, a team of researchers spanning three different continents (Europe, Asia and Australia) was able to pull off the extraordinary feat of developing a simple route to reprogram the chemical nature of MOF materials. One of the ways to flip the switch of reprogram-ability was found to be through thermally triggered reversible Diels–Alder (DA) and hetero-Diels-Alder (HDA) reactions through the trifecta of Zirconium, Zinc and Aluminium derived MOFs. In addition, the thiol-maleimide Michael addition reaction was also demonstrated as a post-synthetic modification (PSM) for the fabrication of chemically diverse MOFs.

This exciting piece of work is part of Dr. Basit’s research efforts focused on developing facile strategies for chemical reprogramming of a diverse range of materials. Considering the ever-evolving challenges associated with the sustainable and reliable access to functional materials and their fossil fuel origin, the discovery of such strategies will enable the practical realization of Circular Economy model. The members of Dr. Basit’s research group Dr. Sana Nayab (Postdoctoral research fellow) and Ms. Iqra Azeem (PhD student) played the leading role in this study.


The study was published in the leading American Chemical Society (ACS) Journal Inorganic Chemistry with the title: Reversible Diels–Alder and Michael Addition Reactions Enable the Facile Postsynthetic Modification of Metal–Organic Frameworks.

Sana Nayab, Vanessa Trouillet, Hartmut Gliemann, Peter G. Weidler, Iqra Azeem, Saadia R. Tariq, Anja S. Goldmann, Christopher Barner-Kowollik, and Basit Yameen

Inorganic Chemistry 2021 60 (7), 4397-4409

DOI: 10.1021/acs.inorgchem.0c02492