Future-Oriented Advanced Diarylethene Photoswitches: From Molecular Design to Spontaneous Assembly Systems

Hong Bo Cheng, Shuchun Zhang, Enying Bai, Xiaoqiao Cao, Jiaqi Wang, Ji Qi, Jun Liu, Jing Zhao, Liqun Zhang, Juyoung Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


Diarylethene (DAE) photoswitch is a new and promising family of photochromic molecules and has shown superior performance as a smart trigger in stimulus-responsive materials. During the past few decades, the DAE family has achieved a leap from simple molecules to functional molecules and developed toward validity as a universal switching building block. In recent years, the introduction of DAE into an assembly system has been an attractive strategy that enables the photochromic behavior of the building blocks to be manifested at the level of the entire system, beyond the DAE unit itself. This assembly-based strategy will bring many unexpected results that promote the design and manufacture of a new generation of advanced materials. Here, recent advances in the design and fabrication of diarylethene as a trigger in materials science, chemistry, and biomedicine are reviewed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2108289
JournalAdvanced Materials
Issue number16
StatePublished - 21 Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21502195, 51873006), the financial supports from the Major Program (51790502) of the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Beijing Municipal Natural Science Foundation (2182053), and the Fok Ying Tong Education Foundation of China (Grant No. 171040). J.Y. is supported by a grant from Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (2021R1A6A1A10039823).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Wiley-VCH GmbH.


  • diarylethene
  • photoswitches
  • self-assembly
  • stimulus-responsive materials


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