JBIC Journal of Biological Inorganic Chemistry

, Volume 17, Issue 8, pp 1217–1230 | Cite as

Synthesis, characterization, and antibacterial and anticancer screening of {M2+–Co3+–M2+} and {Co3+–M2+} (M is Zn, Cd, Hg) heterometallic complexes

  • Nagendra K. Kaushik
  • Anurag Mishra
  • Afsar Ali
  • J. S. Adhikari
  • Akhilesh K. Verma
  • Rajeev GuptaEmail author
Original Paper


The cobalt(III) complexes Et4N[Co(L1)2] and [Co(L2)3] [H2L1 is 2,6-bis(N-(2-pyridyl)carbamoyl)pyridine and HL2 is 2-(N-(2-pyridyl)carbamoyl)pyridine] were used as the building blocks for preparing a series of {M2+–Co3+–M2+} (where M is Zn, Cd, or Hg) and {Co3+–M2+} (where M is Zn or Cd) heterometallic complexes. All heterometallic complexes were characterized using a host of spectroscopic methods (IR, NMR, and UV/vis spectroscopy and mass spectrometry), elemental analysis, and conductivity measurements. One of the representative compounds, {Hg2+–Co3+–Hg2+}, was characterized crystallographically, and it was revealed that two Hg(II) ions are coordinated within the clefts created by the building block Et4N[Co(L1)2]. The results of screening for anticancer activity against the human brain tumor U87 cell line and antibacterial activity against a range of resistant (Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Proteus vulgaris) as well as standard (Staphylococcus aureus SA 96, P. aeruginosa MTCC 1688, Klebsiella planticola MTCC 2272, and Escherichia coli T7) bacterial strains indicate promising activities. Notably, the observed activity was found to vary with the type of building block and the secondary metal ion present in the heterometallic complex. Treatment-induced cell death [3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide, MTT and macrocolony assay), growth inhibition, cytogenetic damage, cell cycle delay, and apoptosis were studied as the parameters for cellular response.


Heterometallic complexes Antibacterial activity Cytotoxic activity DNA cell cycle analysis Apoptosis 



R.G. gratefully acknowledges financial support from the Department of Science & Technology (DST), Government of India. The authors thank the CIF-USIC of the University of Delhi for instrumental facilities. N.K.K. thanks the ACBR for laboratory facilities.

Supplementary material

775_2012_937_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (178 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 177 kb)


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Copyright information

© SBIC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nagendra K. Kaushik
    • 1
  • Anurag Mishra
    • 1
  • Afsar Ali
    • 1
  • J. S. Adhikari
    • 2
  • Akhilesh K. Verma
    • 1
  • Rajeev Gupta
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of DelhiDelhiIndia
  2. 2.Institute of Nuclear Medicine and Allied SciencesDelhiIndia

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