Stimuli-Responsive Principles of Supramolecular Organizations Emerging from Self-Assembling and Self-Organizable Dendrons, Dendrimers, and Dendronized Polymers
All activities of our daily life, of the nature surrounding us and of the entire society and its complex economic and political systems are affected by stimuli. Therefore, understanding stimuli-responsive principles in nature, biology, society, and in complex synthetic systems is fundamental to natural and life sciences. This invited Perspective attempts to organize, to the best of our knowledge, for the first time the stimuli-responsive principles of supramolecular organizations emerging from self-assembling and self-organizable dendrons, dendrimers, and dendronized polymers. Definitions of stimulus and stimuli from different fields of science are first discussed. Subsequently, we decided that supramolecular organizations of self-assembling and self-organizable dendrons, dendrimers, and dendronized polymers may fit best in the definition of stimuli from biology. After a brief historical introduction to the discovery and development of conventional and self-assembling and self-organizable dendrons, dendrimers, and dendronized polymers, a classification of stimuli-responsible principles as internal- and external-stimuli was made. Due to the enormous amount of literature on conventional dendrons, dendrimers, and dendronized polymers as well as on their self-assembling and self-organizable systems we decided to discuss stimuli-responsive principles only with examples from our laboratory. We apologize to all contributors to dendrimers and to the readers of this Perspective for this space-limited decision. Even after this decision, restrictions to a limited number of examples were required. In spite of this, we expect that this Perspective will provide a new way of thinking about stimuli in all fields of self-organized complex soft matter.