In a multicomponent mixture of potential guests and hosts, self-sorting phenomena can direct self-assembly processes into the formation of only one or a small subset out of all possible assemblies.
Self-sorting is often categorized into the so-called narcissistic self-sorting, in which a molecule recognizes an identical copy of itself, but social self-sorting is also possible
The Schalley group has investigated a number of different supramolecular complexes with respect to self-sorting phenomena, inter alia pseudorotaxanes, calixarene capsules, metallo-supramolecular complexes and cucurbituril assemblies.
Integrative self-sorting of two divalent compounds, one axle bearing two different secondary ammonium ions and a crown ether dimer incorporating crown-7 and crown-8. The only product is the assembly with antiparallel axles and crown dimers
Self-Sorted Metallo-Supramolecular Assemblies
Self-Sorted Cucurbituril Complexes
Self-Sorted Tetraureacalixarene Capsules