A tripropargylammonium surfactant with a methacrylate-terminated hydrophobic tail was combined with a bile salt derivative, divinyl benzene (DVB), and a photo-cross-linker above its critical micelle concentration (CMC). Surface-cross-linking with a diazide, surface-functionalization with an azido sugar derivative, and free-radical-core-cross-linking under UV irradiation yielded molecularly imprinted nanoparticles (MINPs) with template-specific binding pockets. The MINPs resemble protein receptors in size, complete water-solubility, and tailored binding sites in their hydrophobic cores. Strong and selective binding of bile salt derivatives was obtained, depending on the cross-linking density of the system.
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