A convenient conversion is described of thiourea-based receptors to fluorescent isothiouronium-based photoinduced electron transfer (PET) sensors for oxoanion sensing. Naphthalene- or anthracene-functionalized mono-isothiouroniums are synthesized from the corresponding thioureas, in which the fluorophore is connected to the sulfur atom of the thiourea moiety by a methylene or an ethylene spacer. Even though all of the isothiouroniums with a methylene spacer readily decompose in MeOH upon excitation of thefluorophore moiety, the isothiouronium with an ethylene spacer shows good stability under identical conditions. The naphthyl isothiouronium with an ethylene spacer shows a significant fluorescence enhancement upon formation of a 1:1 complex with oxoanions in MeOH, and the selectivity follows the order of hydrogen phosphate > acetate ≫ dihydrogen phosphate ≫ chloride. The results in the present work indicate that various types of fluorescent PET sensors might be readily obtainable from non-fluorescent thiourea-based receptors by the introduction of appropriate fluorophores at the sulfur atom of thiourea-binding sites.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of the Chemical Society, Perkin Transactions 2|
|Publication status||Published - 2002 May 21|
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