Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials

Group Leader: Daniel Maspoch


UAB Extraordinary Doctorate Prizes 2018-2019

Dr Civan Avci, Dr Ceren Çamur and Dr Javier Ivan Patarroyo Rengifo, former doctoral students at the ICN2 and the UAB, received this award for their theses, defended in the academic year 2018-1019.

ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch awarded an ERC Advanced Grant for his project CLIPOFF-CHEM

Among the projects assigned this year a European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant is CLIPOFF-CHEM, which will be led by ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch, group head at the ICN2.This project aims to develop a highly innovative top-down synthesis technique, based on the control at molecular level of the breaking of preformed molecules and structures. 

Researchers develop enzyme-powered micromotors based on metal-organic porous materials

In a new article published in the prestigious Journal of the American Chemical Society, researchers describe how they successfully designed and fabricated bubble-propelled enzymatic micromotors built from a highly porous metal-organic framework (MOF). These new micromotors might lead to applications for drug delivery and adsorption of pollutants. This work was co-led by researchers from the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) and scientists from the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2).

More robust nanomotors for drug delivery developed with nano-encapsulation technologies

Researchers from the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) and the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2) have developed a novel type of encapsulated enzymatic nanomotors, named LipoBots, for medical applications. As explained in a paper published in Advanced Functional Materials, the LipoBots are self-powered and preserve their enzymatic functionalities after exposure to harsh conditions, as those of the human stomach environment.

Spray-drying to produce MOFs and COFs in industrial applications

MOFs and COFs are porous materials with a broad range of applications, such as gas storage, CO2 capture or drug delivery. The ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group has demonstrated in a work in Accounts of Chemical Research that spray-drying is a suitable method for producing this kind of materials.

Molecules with a spin on a topological insulator: a hybrid approach to magnetic topological states of matter

Controlling the interactions at the interface of a magnetic/topological insulator heterostructure is an outstanding challenge with implications in fundamental science and technology. A research led by the ICN2 Atomic Manipulation and Spectroscopy Group and the Physics and Engineering of Nanodevices Group, in collaboration with the Supramolecular Nanochemistry and Materials Group, the CFM-San Sebastián, ETH Zurich, ISM-Trieste and ALBA Synchrotron, has shown that ligands from metal-organic molecules can be used to tailor the properties of these interfaces. The results are presented in ACS Nano.

BIST supports multidisciplinary research through the BIST Ignite Programme and Awards

The awarded projects are BIOVAC (ICN2 / IBEC), which aims to develop a new generation of vaccines against untreatable infections and multi-resistant bacteria, and BIOSPAD (ICFO / IFAE), which will develop more affordable brain diagnostic tests. ICN2 is involved in 4 of the 5 projects selected in the 2020 Ignite Programme, leading one of them (SensMOF) through Dr Leyre Gómez Navascués.

Advances in the study of novel colloidal metal-organic particles

A tutorial review authored by researchers of the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group, led by ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch, has been recently published on Chemical Society Review and has been featured on its front cover. This paper discusses synthesis techniques and potential applications of colloidal particles of zeolitic imidazolate framework-8.

A new step in the development of self-shaping materials

Researchers from the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group, led by ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch, have developed a procedure to obtain films that can adopt programmed shapes. Published in Advanced Materials, the method is based on the use of flexible submicrometric crystals that increase in size when humidified. The resulting films could serve as autonomous mechanical devices, having potential applications in micromanipulation, automation, and robotics.

ICN2 receives one ERC Proof of Concept Grant

The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded additional funding to 54 ERC grant holders via its Proof of Concept Grants. They are meant to explore the commercial or societal potential of their research. The ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group, led by ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch, is among the awardees.

Prof. Mohamed Eddaoudi delivers a Manuel Cardona Lecture MOFs design and applications

During his talk, Prof. Eddaoudi detailed various industrial key separations and how his group is dedicated on tackling them, playing with high charge density, fine pore size tuning to modify selectivity, water stability and sorbent regeneration conditions. The lecture was entitled entitled “MOF Design to Applications: Impact of pore system control on gas separations and storage”.

Pivotal achievement towards MOF industrialisation

Dr Inhar Imaz and ICREA Prof. Daniel Maspoch are the brains behind one of the methods for metal organic framework synthesis given a boost by the ProDIA project. Their spray drying technique is something of a success story within a success story that will significantly advance the commercialisation of MOFs.

Ahead Therapeutics will participate in the Boston Immersion Program

The spin-off receives the UAB Research Park and Catalunya Emprèn scholarship and will have the opportunity to attend the 2018 edition of the Boston Entrepreneurship Program at Richi Entrepreneurs, from October 15 to November 2, 2018. The objective of this program is to identify and train entrepreneurial talent for social innovation projects.

The ICN2 reopens its doors for this year's ESCOLAB

Lab tours give young students the opportunity to interact with real scientists and get a sense of what happens at a research centre. Last week almost 100 students came through our doors to learn about the research carried out at the ICN2. This event was made possible thanks to the participation of the researchers and admin personnel who gave up some their time to organise some unique experiences.

New spin-off Ahead Therapeutics SL to develop novel therapies for autoimmune diseases

Ahead Therapeutics SL is the result of a joint research project with a strong nano component between the Germans Trias i Pujol Research Institute (IGTP), the ICN2 and ICREA. It was created to advance the development of therapies for autoimmune diseases and pursue their application in a clinical setting. Just a few months in, the new company has already attracted 1.1 million euros in private investment.

Self-assembly of highly-porous crystalline particles into novel photonic materials for sensing applications

Researchers from the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2) and the Institute of Materials Science of Madrid (ICMM-CSIC) have formed highly-porous metal-organic framework particles that spontaneously assemble into well-ordered 3D superstructures that present photonic crystal properties. Published in Nature Chemistry, their discoveries are expected to find applications in the design of novel photonic materials for sensing applications, among others.

News about nanocapsules to treat bacterial infections

Scientists at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) and the Catalan Institute for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2) have developed a nanoencapsulation system with a liposome coating in order to increase the efficacy of bacteriophages in oral phage therapy. Different media covered this breakthrough, being FarmacoSalud one of the latest. 

Virus nanocapsules to treat bacterial infections

Researchers from the UAB and the ICN2 have developed a nanoencapsulation system which increases the efficacy of bacteriophages, viruses used to eliminate bacterial infections. The system, published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, was tested successfully in animals with Salmonella and could be soon used in humans. 

Virus nanocapsules to treat infections

Encapsulated bacteriophages for enhanced oral phage therapy

Encapsulated bacteriophages are more resistant to the stomach low pH and increase their residence time in the intestinal tract of broilers. The research, published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, was conducted jointly by the UAB Group of Molecular Microbiology, led by Dr Montserrat Llagostera, and the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group, led by ICREA Professor Daniel Maspoch.

ICN2 hosts Joves i Ciencia Program one more year

Eight students have developed their 2015 Joves i Ciencia Program projects at the ICN2 with the collaboration of eight of our researchers. In a two-week program, funded by the Fundació Catalunya La Pedrera, the pre-university students got in touch with real nanoscience and nanotechnology research.

The Germans Trias Institute takes a step towards a Type 1 Diabetes vaccine by using nanotherapy

For the first time liposomes that imitate cells in the process of natural death have been used to treat Diabetes. Researchers generated liposomes in collaboration with professionals from the ICN2. PLOS ONE Journal publishes the work today. The next steps are to confirm the efficacy in vivo with cells from patients and to carry out clinical trials to prevent the disease and to cure it.

ICN2 participates in the inaugural event of the Barcelona’s NOVUM Science Festival

ICREA Research Prof Daniel Maspoch, Group Leader of the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry & Materials, introduced Dr. Javier Garcia Martinez, director of the Nanotechnology Laboratory at the University of Alacant and cofounder of Rive Technology Inc. (Boston, MA). The event, held on April 15 at the Barcelona City Hall, was the inaugural conference of the NOVUM Program.

ICN2 hosts the last ESCOLAB of the season

Students from IES Can Puig (Sant Pere de Ribes) got in touch with nanotechnology visiting the ICN2 facilities in the last ESCOLAB visit of the season. They had the opportunity to enter the laboratories of the Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group and interacted with the nanoscale through a hands-on experimental session led by the Communication Department and Dr Ignasi Fina, from the ICN2 Oxide Nanoelectronics Group.

A straightforward, rapid and continuous method to protect MOF nanocrystals against water

An article in Advanced Materials magazine presents a one-step, alternative, rapid, and scalable spray-drying (SD) synthesis of Metal-Organic Framework (MOF) nanocrystals coated with organic polymers (MOF@polymer composites) with enhanced hydrolytic stabilities. This method, which should enable molecular fabrication of various functional composites for a wide array of industrial applications, has been described by the Supramolecular NanoChemistry & Materials Group led by ICREA Research Prof Daniel Maspoch.

A sponge-like molecular cage for purification of fullerenes

A work in Nature Communications presents a supramolecular nanocage which encapsulates fullerenes of different sizes and allows the extraction of pure C60 and C70 through a washing-based strategy. The work was coordinated from the Universitat de Girona and participated by Ramón y Cajal Researcher Dr. Inhar Imaz and ICREA Research Prof. Daniel Maspoch from the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry & Materials Group.

Encapsulation to enhance vaccine efficiency in fishes

A work published in Vaccine, and led by the Institut de Biotecnologia i de Biomedicina (IBB – UAB) and ICN2, studies the biodistribution and immunological efficacy protecting from infection of immunostimulant-loaded nanoliposomes in zebrafish in vivo.

Recent and forthcoming advances in MOF superstructures synthesis

Researchers from the ICN2 Supramolecular NanoChemistry and Materials Group have published a Concept Article in Chemistry: A European Journal to showcase recently developed synthetic strategies to control the 1-, 2- and 3-D organization of Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOF) crystals.

Dr. Daniel Maspoch appointed ICREA Research Professor

Dr. Daniel Maspoch has been appointed ICREA Research Professor

Dr. Daniel Maspoch has been appointed as ICREA Research Professor (Institució Catalana de Recerca i Estudis Avancats) at the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology (ICN). From September 15th, the Supramolecular NanoChemistry & Materials group, NANOUP, will be a core group at the ICN. As a result, NANOUP Micro- and Nanoencapsulation Technologies Division will also form part of the global services from the ICN, providing expertise, specialist equipment and dedicated laboratory space for product R&D and industrial scale-up.

Coordination Polymer Nanofibers Generated by Microfluidic Synthesis

For the first time, microfluidic techniques offering parallel synthesis and a high level of control have been used to assemble 1D coordination polymer nanofibers

The team at the Supramolecular Nanochemistry & Materials Group at the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology (ICN)collaborating with ETH Zurich, have demonstrated a novel microfluidics technique for controlling the assembly of metal ions and organic building blocks to form one dimensional coordination polymer nanostructures.

Nanoscale Metal-Organic Materials

Nanoscale metal-organic materials being developed at the ICN offer exciting potential for future applications

The Supramolecular Nanochemistry & Materials Group at the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology (ICN), in Barcelona, are developing entirely new classes of materials combining organic and metal elements, that offer unique properties with exciting potential applications.

New Technique - Lithography-based approach for growing MOF crystals

A novel, versatile pen-type lithography-based methodology has been developed to control the growth of Metal-Organic Framework (MOF) crystals on surfaces

The team Supramolecular Nanochemistry & Materials Group at the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology (ICN), have demonstrated a novel, versatile pen-type lithography-based approach for growing HKUST-1 crystals on supports and shown that through the use of surfaces with low wettability it is possible to control the growth of a submicrometer single crystal at a desired location on a surface.