Signal transduction and amplification across the lipid bilayers are important features of biological processes. Artificial vesicles consisting of liquid enclosed by synthetic molecules (transducer) embedded lipid bilayers have the potential to transduce and amplify the information based on controlled molecule translocation. By switching the molecules on lipid bilayers from lipophobic to lipophilic will be able to allow the neutral molecule to enter the lipid bilayers. The other head group on the transducer will be activated by exposing to the internal aqueous phase and trigger the encapsulated substrates to generate the output signal. As the internal reaction is promoted by catalyst the signal amplification can be achieved at this stage.

There is a huge potential for these artificial signal transduction systems as the application of this system is depending on the specific catalytic reactions that happened in the internal aqueous phase. Coupling different external signal and the internal chemistry of a vesicle will offer more possibilities to these signal transduction systems. These artificial vesicles are already used in triggered drug-release, vesicle-to-vesicle communication system, ion transportations and some more sophisticated applications.


Dr Xiaodong Jin is an assistant professor (2022 - present) in the department of chemistry with expertise in synthetic chemistry. The main research areas in his group include the designing of molecules for the transmembrane signal transduction system and nucleoside chemistry.
Xiaodong obtained his BSc degree in applied chemistry from East China University of Science and Technology in 2012 and PhD degree from Imperial College London in 2018. After his PhD, he was a research associate at the University of Sheffield for synthetic research work funded by EPSRC (2018-2022) and CRUK (2021-2022).