Selected publication

† denotes equal contribution, * denotes corresponding authors

37. Unraveling the Structure and Function of Melanin through Synthesis

W. Cao,† X. Zhou,† N. C. McCallum, Z. Hu, Q. Z. Ni, U. Kapoor, C. Heil, K. S. Cay, T. Zand, A. J. Mantanona, A. Jayaraman, A. Dhinojwala, D. Deheyn, M. D. Shawkey, M. D. Burkart, J. D. Rinehart, N. C. Gianneschi*

J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2021, 143, 2622–2637.

(Highly Cited Paper)

36. Selenomelanin: An Abiotic Selenium Analogue of Pheomelanin

W. Cao, N. C. McCallum, Q. Z. Ni, W. Li, H. Boyce, H. Mao, X. Zhou, H. Sun, M. P. Thompson, C. Battistella, M. R. Wasielewski, A. Dhinojwala, M. D. Shawkey,* M. D. Burkart*, Z. Wang,* N. C. Gianneschi*

J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2020, 142, 12802-12810.

35. Proapoptotic Peptide Brush Polymer Nanoparticles via Photoinitiated Polymerization-Induced Self-Assembly

H. Sun,† W. Cao,† N. Zang,† T. D. Clemons, G.  M.  Scheutz, Z.  Hu, M. P. Thompson, Y. Liang, M. Vratsanos, X. Zhou, W. Choi, B. S. Sumerlin, S. I. Stupp, N. C. Gianneschi*

Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59, 19136-19142.

34. Fluorescent Cyanine Dye J-Aggregates in the Fluorous Phase

W. Cao, E. M. Sletten* J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2018, 140, 2727-2730.

33. Tellurium-Containing Polymer Micelles: Competitive-Ligand-Regulated Coordination Responsive Systems

W. Cao, Y. W. Gu, M. Meineck, T. Y. Li, H. P. Xu* J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 5132-5137.

32. γ-Ray-Responsive Supramolecular Hydrogel Based on a Diselenide-Containing Polymer and a Peptide

W. Cao, X. L. Zhang, X. M. Miao, Z. M. Yang*, H. P. Xu* Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 6233-6237.

31. Selenium-Containing Polymers: Promising Biomaterials for Controlled Release and Enzyme Mimics

H. P. Xu*, W. Cao, X. Zhang* Acc. Chem. Res. 2013, 46, 1647-1658.

(Highly Cited Paper)

30. Coordination-Responsive Selenium-Containing Polymer Micelles for Controlled Drug Release

W. Cao, Y. Li, Y. Yi, S. B. Ji, L. W. Zeng, Z. W. Sun*, H. P. Xu*

Chem. Sci. 2012, 3, 3403-3408.

29. Selenium/Tellurium Containing Polymer Materials

W. Cao, L. Wang, H. P. Xu*

Nano Today, 2015, 10, 717-736

28. Radical Enriched Artificial Melanin

W. Cao, A. J. Mantanona, H. Mao, N. C. McCallum, Y. Jiao, C. Battistella, V. Caponetti, N. Zang, M. P. Thompson, M. Montalti, J. F. Stoddart, M. R. Wasielewski, J. D. Rinehart*, N. C. Gianneschi *Chem. Mater. 2020. 32, 5759–5767.

27. Self-Assembly of Macromolecules within Single Topological Defects of Nematic Solvents

J. Noh,† W. Cao,† H, Sun, Y. Yang, N. C. Gianneschi*, N. L. Abbott* Chem. Mater. 2020. 32, (15), 6753-6764.

26. Coordination Responsive Tellurium-Containing Multilayer Film for Controlled Delivery

W. Cao, L. Wang, H. P. Xu* Chem. Commun. 2015, 51, 5520 -5522.

25. Ultra-Sensitive ROS-Responsive Tellurium-Containing Polymers

W. Cao, Y. W. Gu, T. Y. Li, H. P. Xu* Chem. Commun. 2015, 51, 7069-7071.

24. ROS-Triggered Degradation of Selenide-Containing Polymers Based on Selenoxide Elimination

L. Wang, K. X. Zhu, W. Cao*, C. X. Sun, C. J. Lu, H. P. Xu* Polym. Chem., 2019, 10, 2039 – 2046.

23. Selenium-Containing Supra-Amphiphiles

W. Cao,* H. P. Xu* Mater. Chem. Frontiers 2019, 3, 2010-2017.

22. Tellurium-Containing Nanoparticles for Controlled Delivery of Cisplatin Based on Coordination Interaction

W. Cao, F. Li, R. F. Chen, H. P. Xu* RSC Adv. 2016, 6, 94033-94037.

21. The Combination of Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy towards More Efficient Drug Delivery

W. Cao, Y. W. Gu, M. Meineck, H. P. Xu* Chem. – Asian J. 2014, 9, 48-57.

20. Diselenide-Pemetrexed Assemblies for Combined Cancer Immuno-, Radio-, and Chemotherapies 

T. Y. Li,† S. Pan,† S. Gao,* W. Xiang, C. Sun, W. Cao, H. P. Xu, * Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59, 2700-2704.

19. Degradable Polyphosphoramidate via Ring-Opening Metathesis Cryo-Polymerization

Y. Liang, H. Sun,* W. Cao, M. P. Thompson, N. C. Gianneschi* ACS Macro Letter 2020, 9, 1417-1422.

18. Bioactive Peptide Brush Polymers via Photoinduced Reversible-Deactivation Radical Polymerization
H. Sun, W. Choi, N. Z. Zang, C. Battistella, M. P. Thompson, W. Cao, X. H. Zhou, C. Forman, N. C. Gianneschi.* Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2019, 58,17359–17364.

17. Artificial Allomelanin Nanoparticles

X. Zhou,† N. McCallum,† Z. Hu, W. Cao, K. Gnanasekaran, Y. Feng, J. F. Stoddart, Z. Wang,* N. C. Gianneschi.* ACS Nano, 2019, 13, 10980-10990.

16. Recent Advances in Amphiphilic Polymer-Oligonucleotide Nanomaterials via Living/Controlled Polymerization Technologies

H. Sun, L. Yang, M. Thompson, S. Schara, W. Cao, W. Choi, Z. Hu, N. Zang, W. Tan,* N. Gianneschi* Bioconjug. Chem. 2019, 30, 1889−1904.

15. UV-Responsive Cyclic Peptide Progelator Bioinks

A. S. Carlini, M. Touve, H. Fernández-Caro, M. P. Thompson, M. Cassidy, W. Cao, N. C. Gianneschi* Faraday Discuss. 2019, 219, 44-57.

14. Near-Infrared Light Stimuli-Responsive Synergistic Therapy Nanoplatforms Based on the Coordination of Tellurium-Containing Block Polymer and Cisplatin for Cancer Treatment

F. Li, T. Y. Li, W. Cao, J. H. Xia, H. P. Xu* Biomaterials 2017, 133, 208-218.

13. Multi-Hierarchical Responsive Polymers: Stepwise Oxidation of a Selenium- and Tellurium-Containing Block Copolymer with Sensitivity to both Chemical and Electrochemical Stimuli

L. Wang, W. C. Wang, W. Cao, H. P. Xu* Polym. Chem. 2017, 8, 4520-4527.

12. Tellurium-Containing Polymers: Towards Biomaterials and Optoelectronic Materials

L. Wang, W. Cao, H. P. Xu* ChemNanoMat 2016, 2, 479-488.

11. Visible Light Induced Self-Healing Diselenide-Containing Polyurethane Elastomer

S. B. Ji, W. Cao, Y. Yu, H. P. Xu* Adv. Mater. 2015, 27, 7740-7745.

10. Ultra-Sensitive ROS-Responsive Coassemblies of Tellurium-Containing Molecules and Phospholipids

L. Wang, F. Q. Fan, W. Cao, H. P. Xu* ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2015, 7, 16054-16060.

9. Dynamic Diselenide Bonds: Exchange Reaction Induced by Visible Light without Catalysis

S. B. Ji, W. Cao, Y. Yu, H. P. Xu* Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2014, 53, 6781-6785.

8. Dual Redox Responsive Coassemblies Of Diselenide-Containing Block Copolymers and Polymer Lipids

L. Wang, W. Cao, Y. Yi, H. P. Xu* Langmuir 2014, 30, 5628-5636.

7. Selenium–Platinum Coordination Compounds as Novel Anticancer Drugs: Selectively Killing Cancer Cells via a Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS)-Apoptosis Route

L. W. Zeng, Y. Li, T. Y. Li, W. Cao, Y. Yi, W. J. Geng, Z. W. Sun*, H. P. Xu* Chem. Asian. J. 2014. 9, 2295-2302.

6. Switchable Catalytic Activity: Selenium-Containing Peptides with Redox-Controllable Self-Assembly Properties

X. M. Miao, W. Cao, W. Zheng, J. Wang, X. Zhang, J. Gao, C. Yang, D. Kong*, H. P. Xu*, L. Wang, Z. M. Yang* Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 7781-7785.

5. Red Light Responsive Diselenide-Containing Block Copolymer Micelles.

P. Han, S. Li, W. Cao, Y. Li, Z. W. Sun, Z. Q.Wang, H. P. Xu* J. Mater. Chem. B, 2013,1, 740-743.

4. Visible-Light-Induced Disruption of Diselenide-Containing Layer-by-Layer Films: Toward Combination of Chemotherapy and Photodynamic Therapy

H. F. Ren, Y. T. Wu, Y. Li, W. Cao, Z. W. Sun*, H. P. Xu*, X. Zhang Small 2013, 9, 3981-3986.

3. A New Dynamic Covalent Bond of Se-N: Towards Controlled Self-Assembly and Disassembly

Y. Yi, H. P. Xu*, L. Wang, W. Cao, X. Zhang* Chem. -Eur. J. 2013, 19, 9506-9510.

2. A ROS Eliminating Nanocomposite Film Fabricated from Diselenide-Containing Polymer Micelles

S. B. Ji, W. Cao, H. P. Xu* Part. Part. Syst. Char. 2013,30, 1034-1038.

1. Fabrication of Well-Defined Crystalline Azacalixarene Nanosheets Assisted by Se⋯N Non-Covalent Interactions

Y. Yi, S. Fa, W. Cao, L. W. Zeng, M. X. Wang, H. P. Xu*, X. Zhang*

Chem. Commun. 2012, 48, 7495-7497.

Book Chapters

  1. Emerging Trends in Macromolecular Self-assembly. Chapter 10: Selenium-Containing Polymer Functional Self-Assemblies.

H. P. Xu, W. Cao, X. Zhang. Beijing: Ke xue chu ban she, 2018, pp 314-343. 


  1. Methods and Materials for Matching Chemistry of Individuals and Human Melanin. Nathan C. Gianneschi, Zofia Elzbieta Siwicka, Wei Cao, U.S. Provisional Pat. Ser. No. 63/357,713, filed [07-01-2022].
  2. Selenium-Containing Analogues of Pheomelanin and Related Materials and Methods of Making. Nathan C. Gianneschi, Wei Cao, International Appl. No. PCT/US2020/05790, filed [10-29-2020].