Zhichang LIU, Ph.D.

Laboratory of Supramolecular Organic Functional Assemblies (SOFA LAB)


Email: liu@westlake.edu.cn


Zhichang LIU, Ph.D.

Laboratory of Supramolecular Organic Functional Assemblies (SOFA LAB)


Email: liu@westlake.edu.cn


“The establishment of Westlake University has created many firsts in China's higher education. Through our continuous efforts, Westlake University will certainly be ranked among the best in the world.”



He received his PhD in polymer chemistry in 2010 with Professor Tien-Yau Luh from Shanghai Institute of Organic Chemistry, CAS. During the period from 2010 to 2018, he pursued research in Sir Fraser Stoddart’s group at Northwestern University as a Postdoctoral Fellow. In September 2018, he joined Westlake University as the first faculty in chemistry to start his independent academic career. To date, he has published 63 high profile scientific papers and been an inventor of 10 patents. For his research into the isolation of gold, he was the co-recipient of two prestigious Awards―the North America Chemical Engineering Project of the Year Award and the Highly Commended in Sustainable Technology Award for Innovation & Excellence―from the Institution of Chemical Engineers. Dr Liu is also the co-founder of a startup company—named Cycladex—which is focused on gold purification.



His current research interests focus on the development of Supramolecular Organic Functional Assemblies (SOFA) by means of organic and supramolecular chemistry. Projects in the Liu’s SOFA Lab involve (i) synthesis, reaction and application of topological macrocycles and cages and (ii) rational construction of 1D, 2D, and 3D topological polymers through supramolecular-templated polymerization. Current application areas of interest include precisely-controllable and functional assembly of macrocycles, stimuli-responsive materials for eco-friendly settings, supramolecular catalysis, and energy conversion.”


Selected Publications(*: Corresponding author, #: Contributed equally)

1. Tang, M.; Liang, Y.; Lu, X.; Miao, X.; Jiang, L.; Liu, J.; Bian, L.; Wang, S.; Wu, L.; Liu, Z.* “Molecular-strain engineering of double-walled tetrahedraChem 2021, 7, DOI: 10.1016/j.chempr.2021.05.004.

2. Liang, Y.;# Tang, M.;# Liu, Z.* “Molecular bows¾strained bow-shaped macrocyclesChem. Lett. 2020, 49, 1329–1336. (Inside Cover, Invited Highlight Review).

3. Lin, R.-L.; Dong, Y.-P.; Tang, M.; Liu, Z.*; Tao, Z.;* Liu, J.-X.* “Selective Recovery and Detection of Gold with Cucurbit[n = 5–7]urilsInorg. Chem. 2020, 59, 3850–3855.

4. Wu, L.; Chen, Y.; Pei, J.; Tang, M.; Wang, S.; Liu, Z.* “TetrahedronChin. J. Chem. 2019, 37, 834–842.

5. Liu, Z.*; Frasconi, M.; Liu, W-G; Zhang, Y.; Dyar, S. M.; Shen, D.; Sarjeant, A. A.; Goddard, W. A., III; Wasielewski, M. R.; Stoddart, J. F.* Mixed-valence superstructure assembled from a mixed-valence host-guest complex J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 9387–9391.

6. Liu, Z.; Frasconi, M.; Lei, J.; Brown, Z. J.; Zhu, Z.; Cao, D.; Iehl, J.; Liu, G.; Fahrenbach, A. C.; Botros, Y. Y.; Farha, O. K.; Hupp, J. T.; Mirkin, C. A.; Stoddart, J. F.* Selective isolation of gold facilitated by second-sphere coordination with α-cyclodextrin Nat. Commun. 2013, 4, 1855.

(Altmetric Score 142; Highlighted in > 700 news outlets including C&E News, Chemistry World, Nature Asia, Nature Middle East, BBC, Popular Science, Agence France-Presse, Science Daily, Huffington Post, and 参考消息; > 67,000 Page Views)

7. Liu, Z.; Nalluri, S. K. M.; Stoddart, J. F.* Surveying macrocyclic chemistry: From flexible crown ethers to rigid cyclophanes Chem. Soc. Rev. 2017, 46, 24592478. (Insider Front Cover)

8. Sun, J.#; Liu, Z.*,#; Liu, W-G; Wu, Y.; Wang, Y.; Barnes, J. C.; Hermann, K. R.; Wasielewski, M. R.; Goddard, W. A., III; Stoddart, J. F.* Mechanical bond-protected air-stable radicals J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139, 12704–12709. (Highlighted in Chemistry World)

9. Liu, Z.; Samanta, A.; Lei, J.; Sun, J.; Wang, Y.; Stoddart, J. F.* Cation-dependent gold recovery with α-cyclodextrin facilitated by second-sphere coordination J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 11643–11653. (ACS Editors' Choice)

10. Liu, Z.; Sun, J.; Zhou, Y.; Zhang, Y.; Wu, Y.; Nalluri, S. K. M.; Wang, Y.; Samanta, A.; Mirkin, C. A.; Schatz, G. C.; Stoddart, J. F.* Supramolecular gelation of rigid triangular macrocycles through rings of multiple C–H∙∙∙O interactions acting cooperatively J. Org. Chem. 2016, 81, 2581–2588.

11. Samanta, A.#; Liu, Z.#; Nalluri, S. K. M.; Zhang, Y.; Schatz, G. C.; Stoddart, J. F.* Supramolecular double helix formation by diastereoisomeric conformations of configurationally enantiomeric macrocycles J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 14469–14480.

12Liu, Z.; Liu, G.; Wu, Y.; Cao, D.; Sun, J.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Mirkin, C. A.; Stoddart, J. F.* Assembly of supramolecular nanotubes from molecular triangles and 1,2-dihalohydrocarbons J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 16651–16660.

13. Liu, Z.;# Lei, J.;# Frasconi, M.; Li, X.; Cao, D.; Zhu, Z.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Schatz, G. C.; Stoddart, J. F.* A squareplanar tetracoordinate oxygen-containing Ti4O17 cluster stabilized by two 1,1′-ferrocenedicarboxylato ligands Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2014, 53, 9193−9197.

14. Liu, Z.; Stoddart, J. F.* Extended metal-carbohydrate frameworks Pure Appl. Chem. 2014, 86, 1323−1334.

15. Liu, Z.; Schneebeli, S. T.; Stoddart, J. F.* Second-sphere coordination revisited Chimia 2014, 68, 315−320. (Invited article for the Alfred Werner Nobel Prize centenary)

16. Guo, Q.-H.; Liu, Z.; Li, P.; Shen, D.; Xu, Y.; Ryder, M. R.; Chen, H.; Stern, C. L.; Malliakas, C. D.; Zhang, L.; Qiu, Y.; Shi, Y.; Snurr, R. Q.; Philp, D.; Farha, O. K.; Stoddart, J. F.* “A hierarchical nanoporous diamondoid superstructure Chem 2019, 5, 2353–2364.

17. Nalluri, SKM; Liu, Z.; Wu, Y.; Hermann, K. R.; Samanta, A.; Kim, D. J.; Krzyaniak, M.; Wasielewski, M. R.; Stoddart, J. F.* Chiral redox-active isosceles triangles J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2016, 138, 5968–5977.

18. Frasconi, M.; Liu, Z.; Lei, J.; Wu, Y.; Strekalova, E.; Malin, D.; Ambrogio, M. W.; Chen, X.; Botros, Y. Y.; Cryns, V. L.; Sauvage, J.-P.;* Stoddart, J. F.* Photo-expulsion of surface-grafted ruthenium complexes and subsequent release of cytotoxic cargos to cancer cells from mesoporous silica nanoparticles J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2013, 135, 11603−11613.

19. Liu, Z.; Chen, C.-H.; Wang, H.-W.; Huang, Y.-C.; Kao, M.-J.; Lim, T.-S.; Luh, T.-Y.* Hydrogen-bonding induced cooperative effect on the energy transfer in helical polynorbornenes appended with porphyrin containing amidic alanine linkers Chem. Asian J. 2010, 5, 1425−1438.

20. Liu, Z.*; Xiang, J. A high yield and pilot-scale process for the preparation of adapalene Org. Process Res. Dev. 2006, 10, 285−288.