“Optochemical Genetics” is the seemingly simple title of the Review by D. Trauner et al.: How can transmembrane proteins and photoswitches be combined and integrated into complex systems such as cells or neural systems to control their behavior with high precision by using light? There has recently been a renaissance of urea chemistry, which is discussed by N. Volz and J. Clayden in a Minireview. The Highlights deal with metal-mediated deformylations (D. Maiti et al.), active DNA demethylation (K. I. Ladewein and M. Jung), and asymmetric α-alkylation of aldehydes (P. I. Dalko et al.).
In the Communications section, K. Ishihara et al. demonstrate enantioselective Diels–Alder reactions with anomalous endo/exo selectivity by using conformationally flexible chiral supramolecular catalysts. M. L. Waters et al. describe the binding of a polyproline helix to a β-hairpin peptide. W. Tremel et al. take advantage of the difference in Pearson hardness to control the self-assembly of inorganic Janus particles on metal chalcogenide nanotubes by means of protecting groups (see picture).
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