Porphyrin-crown ether macrotricyclic co-receptors for bipyridinium cations

Maxwell J. Gunter, Martin R. Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


In order to employ non-covalent interactions to position methyl viologen close to a photoactive centre (in this case a porphyrin) a dibenzo-crown ether, containing mete-substituted aromatic rings and tetraethylene glycol ether chains, was strapped across a porphyrin to produce a macrotricyclic host. This host was observed to complex methyl viologen (paraquat) (Ka 50 and 250 dm3 mol-1 and ΔG° -2.3 and -2.9 kcal mol-1 at 298 K and 263 K, respectively) and [Pt(bpy)(NH3)2](PF6)2 (Ka 1350 dm3 mol-1, ΔG° -4.3 kcal mol-1 at 298 K) by an induced fit mechanism, as a result of rotational barriers associated with the diaryl amide linkage. Efforts to improve the complexing ability of these types of hosts involved a shortening of the linking ether chains and reduction of the amide group linking the crown ether and porphyrin moieties. Of these two directions the reduced host was most successful, complexing all the bipyridinium dications examined, although ligand exchange reactions complicated the binding of the platinum complex (for paraquat ka 480 dm3 mol-1, ΔG° -3.6 kcal mol 1 at 298 K; for diquat Ka 80 dm3 mol-1, ΔG° -2.6 kcal mol-1 at 298 K). In contrast, the host containing shortened ether chains was observed to have similar complexing abilities to its predecessor, as a result of comparable solution conformations (for paraquat Ka 50 dm3 mol-1, ΔG° -2.3 kcal mol-1 at 298 K; for [Pt(bpy)(NH3) 2](PF6)2 Ka 365 dm3 mol-1, ΔG° -2.9 kcal mol-1 at 298 K). However, in this case binding by the platinum complex within the constricted cavity of the host resulted in deformation of the porphyrin and an increased activation barrier to complexation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)995-1008
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions 1
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


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