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  1. Abstract One-photon-absorbing photosensitizers are commonly used in homogeneous photocatalysis which require the absorption of ultraviolet (UV) /visible light to populate the desired excited states with adequate energy and lifetime. Nevertheless, the limited penetration depth and competing absorption by organic substrates of UV/visible light calls upon exploring the utilization of longer-wavelength irradiation, such as near-infrared light (λ irr  > 700 nm). Despite being found applications in photodynamic therapy and bioimaging, two-photon absorption (TPA), the simultaneous absorption of two photons by one molecule, has been rarely explored in homogeneous photocatalysis. Herein, we report a group of ruthenium polypyridyl complexes possessing TPA capability that canmore »drive a variety of organic transformations upon irradiation with 740 nm light. We demonstrate that these TPA ruthenium complexes can operate in an analogous manner as one-photon-absorbing photosensitizers for both energy-transfer and photoredox reactions, as well as function in concert with a transition metal co-catalyst for metallaphotoredox C–C coupling reactions.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
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  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2023
  4. Two new tris-heteroleptic Ru( ii ) complexes with triphenylphosphine (PPh 3 ) coordination, cis -[Ru(phen) 2 (PPh 3 )(CH 3 CN)] 2+ (1a, phen = 1,10-phenanthroline) and cis -[Ru(biq)(phen)(PPh 3 )(CH 3 CN)] 2+ (2a, biq = 2,2′-biquinoline), were synthesized and characterized for photochemotherapeutic applications. Upon absorption of visible light, 1a exchanges a CH 3 CN ligand for a solvent water molecule. Surprisingly, the steady-state irradiation of 2a followed by electronic absorption and NMR spectroscopies reveals the photosubstitution of the PPh 3 ligand. Phosphine photoinduced ligand exchange with visible light from a Ru( ii ) polypyridyl complex has not previouslymore »been reported, and calculations reveal that it results from a trans -type influence in the excited state. Complexes 1a and 2a are not toxic against the triple negative breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231 in the dark, but upon irradiation with blue light, the activity of both complexes increases by factors of >4.2 and 5.8, respectively. Experiments with PPh 3 alone show that the phototoxicity observed for 2a does not arise from the released phosphine ligand, indicating the role of the photochemically generated ruthenium aqua complex on the biological activity. These complexes represent a new design motif for the selective release of PPh 3 and CH 3 CN for use in photochemotherapy.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available February 16, 2023
  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 20, 2022
  6. A series of five ruthenium complexes containing triphenyl phosphine groups known to enhance both cellular penetration and photoinduced ligand exchange, cis -[Ru(bpy) 2 (P( p -R-Ph) 3 )(CH 3 CN)] 2+ , where bpy = 2,2′-bipyridine and P( p -R-Ph) 3 represent para -substituted triphenylphosphine ligands with R = –OCH 3 (1), –CH 3 (2) –H (3), –F (4), and –CF 3 (5), were synthesized and characterized. The photolysis of 1–5 in water with visible light ( λ irr ≥ 395 nm) results in the substitution of the coordinated acetonitrile with a solvent molecule, generating the corresponding aqua complex asmore »the single photoproduct. A 3-fold variation in quantum yield was measured with 400 nm irradiation, Φ 400 , where 1 is the most efficient with a Φ 400 = 0.076(2), and 5 the least photoactive complex, with Φ 400 = 0.026(2). This trend is unexpected based on the red-shifted metal-to-ligand charge transfer (MLCT) absorption of 1 as compared to that of 5, but can be correlated to the substituent Hammett para parameters and p K a values of the ancillary phosphine ligands. Complexes 1–5 are not toxic towards the triple negative breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231 in the dark, but 3 and 5 are >4.2 and >19-fold more cytotoxic upon irradiation with blue light, respectively. A number of experiments point to apoptosis, and not to necrosis or necroptosis, as the mechanism of cell death by 5 upon irradiation. These findings provide a foundation for understanding the role of phosphine ligands on photoinduced ligand substitution and show the enhancement afforded by –CF 3 groups on photochemotherapy, which will aid the future design of photocages for photochemotherapeutic drug delivery.« less
  7. A series of Ru( ii )-terpyridine complexes containing electron-donating bidentate ligands are able to effectively photodissociate nitrile ligands using red light. A spectroscopic investigation of these complexes reveal that they follow anti-energy gap law behavior, providing further evidence that population of 3 LF excited states is not necessary for photoinduced nitrile dissociation.