A Novel Approach to Fabricate Supramolecular Photosensitizers with Enhanced Antibacterial Efficiency

  Supported by NSFC and National Basic Research Program and in cooperation with Prof. Shu Wang in the Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Science, Prof. Xi Zhang and Prof. Zhiqiang Wang have developed a new strategy for the preparation of supramolecular photosensitizers with high antibacterial efficiencies.

  Photosensitizer is a kind of molecules that can generate active singlet oxygen by transferring the energy of light to the surrounding oxygen, thus killing diseased tissues and microorganisms. Porphyrin is a kind of photosensitizer commonly employed in photodynamic therapy. However, the porphyrin molecules are easy to aggregate in water, for which the efficiency for generating singlet oxygen is greatly lowered. As shown in the figure below, based on host-guest interaction, Xi Zhang et al. have successfully fabricated a novel supramolecular photosensitizer which shows a greatly improved antibacterial efficiency. The fabrication of the supramolecular photosensitizer isfacile, highly efficient, environmentally friendly and has greatly decreased the number of required synthetic steps. In addition, it also allows for an adaptive system with switchable photophysical properties. It is anticipated that this approach can be extended to the fabrication of other smart functional supramolecular materials. For details, please refer to Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 8285-8289.