From Chemical Topology to Molecular Machines
In biology, motor proteins are of utmost importance in a large variety of processes essential to life (ATPsynthase, a rotary motor, or the myosin-actin complex of striated muscles responsible for contraction or elongation). In the course of the last 20 years, the field of artificial molecular machines has experienced a spectacular development, in relation to molecular devices at the nanometric level or mimics of biological motors. A few recent examples are based on simple or more complex interlocking ring compounds acting as molecular machines. Particularly significant examples include "molecular shuttles" as well as more complex species reminiscent of muscles or able to act as molecular compressors.