Roxin A, Chen J, Paton AS, Bender TP & Zheng G
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 2013

With the knowledge that the dominant photodynamic therapy (PDT) mechanism of 1a (WST09) switched from type 2 to type 1 for 1b (WST11) upon taurine-driven E-ring opening, we hypothesized that taurine-driven E-ring opening of bacteriochlorophyll derivatives and net-charge variations would modulate reactive oxygen species (ROS) photogeneration. Eight bacteriochlorophyll a derivatives were synthesized with varying charges that either contained the E ring (2a–5a) or were synthesized by taurine-driven E-ring opening (2b–5b). Time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) modeling showed that all derivatives would be type 2 PDT-active, and ROS-activated fluorescent probes were used to investigate the photogeneration of a combination of type 1 and type 2 PDT ROS in organic- and aqueous-based solutions. These investigations validated our predictive modeling calculations and showed that taurine-driven E-ring opening and increasing negative charge generally enhanced ROS photogeneration in aqueous solutions. We propose that these structure–activity relationships may provide simple strategies for designing bacteriochlorins that efficiently generate ROS upon photoirradiation.

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