Designing hypercyclic replicating networks
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In the last 20 years there has been a number of synthetic and natural product based molecular replicators published in the literature. The majority of these systems have focused on the minimal model with only a few examples of cross-catalytic or reciprocal replication. Of the cross-catalytic systems investigated the majority focus around the use of natural products, oligonucleotides, peptides etc. This thesis will investigate the design, synthesis and kinetic analysis of both synthetic minimal and reciprocal replicating systems, and how these two forms of replication interact in a complex hypercyclic network. Chapter 1 introduces key concepts such as molecular recognition, intramolecularity/ enzyme kinetic, bisubstrate systems and the work conducted into replication systems to date. Chapter 2 describes the design, synthesis and kinetic analysis of a reciprocal replicating system, based on Diels-Alder and 1,3-dipolar cycloadditions, before going on to discuss what we have learned and how this system can be improved. Chapter 3 focuses on the design, synthesis and kinetic analysis of a replicating network (minimal and reciprocal replication), based on 1,3-dipolar cycloadditions. Initial individual systems are examined in isolation to determine their behavior and nature. After which the systems are combined to observe how each species interacts in a potential complex hypercyclic network. Chapter 4 investigates the redesign of the replicating network in Chapter 3 in order to overcome the problems identified from its kinetic analysis. Chapter 5 introduces the shift in direction away from kinetically controlled replicating networks towards systems in thermodynamic equilibrium.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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