IIT Delhi researchers synthesize promising molecule for chemotherapeutic drugs

Polyarylquinone is a molecule that is used in various industries such as pharmaceuticals, optoelectronics, and bio-imaging.


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IIT DelhiIIT Delhi

Press Trust of India | July 5, 2022 | 04:05 PM IST

New Delhi: Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, have found a new method for easy synthesis of polyarylquinone, a promising molecule for chemotherapeutic drugs, officials said on Tuesday. Polyarylquinone is a molecule that is used in various industries such as pharmaceuticals, optoelectronics, and bio-imaging. However, its synthesis is often challenging and plagued with various bottleneck steps, they claimed.

According to a five-member team, they have demonstrated how polyarylquinones can be synthesized easily by simple relayed addition of fulvene (a five-membered ring compound) on quinones (six-membered ring structure)with the help of a Pd (Palladium metal) catalyst.

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"Aryl quinones-based chemotherapeutic drugs are already present in the market, but our molecule shows a promising result by observing better cytotoxicity than previously discovered aryquinone doxorubicin drug. Since the need of the hour is to develop a technology that decreases the cost and manpower and dependence of the country on the import of active pharmaceuticals, this will open the paths for industries and ultimately benefit would pass to society," said lead researcher, Ravi P Singh, Professor at Department of Chemistry, IIT Delhi.

"The ability of man to replicate the molecules of living creatures, and create other molecules like them, is a remarkable development in human history. By employing sophisticated catalytic reactions and appropriately designed reaction processes, chemists can synthesize not only the molecules of nature and their analogues, but also countless other organic molecules for potential applications in many areas of science, technology and everyday life," he added.

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The study, published in reputed international journal ACS Catalysis, also found that "polyarylquinones" can be used as an antioxidant, in chemotherapy and optoelectronics. Singh explained further that the researchers’ work also establishes the broad substrate scope of the reaction and delves into the mechanism of the "dehydrogenative coupling reaction".

"Moreover, single-crystal X-ray diffraction reveals interesting packing motifs suggesting the suitability of these materials in optoelectronics. As a practical utilisation of the reaction, various synthesised polyarylquinones with structural diversity were screened for their redox properties and found to exhibit better antioxidant or chemotherapeutic properties,” he said.

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