Journal of Molecular Modeling

, 23:318 | Cite as

Structures and stabilities of naturally occurring cyclodextrins: a theoretical study of symmetrical conformers

  • Juan José Gamboa-Carballo
  • Vijay Kumar Rana
  • Joëlle Levalois-Grützmacher
  • Sarra Gaspard
  • Ulises Jáuregui-HazaEmail author
Original Paper


A molecular modeling study of symmetrical conformers of α-, β-, and γ-cyclodextrins in the gas and aqueous phases was carried out using the M06-2X density functional method, with SMD employed as an implicit solvation model. Eight symmetrical conformers were found for each cyclodextrin. Values of geometrical parameters obtained from the modeling study were found to agree well with those obtained from X-ray diffraction structures. A vibrational analysis using harmonic frequencies was performed to determine thermodynamic quantities. The GIAO method was applied to determine proton and carbon-13 NMR chemical shifts, which were then compared with corresponding chemical shifts reported in the literature. Hydrogen-bonding patterns were analyzed using geometrical descriptors, and quantum chemical topology was explored by QTAIM analysis. The results of this study indicated that four of the eight conformers studied for each cyclodextrin are the most populated in aqueous solution. These results provide the foundations for future studies of host–guest complexes involving these cyclodextrins.

Graphical abstract

δΔGsolvation: variation of free Gibss energy of solvation


Cyclodextrins Density functional theory Vibrational analysis GIAO QTAIM 



Computational calculations were performed using Wahoo, the cluster of the Centre Commun de Calcul Intensif of the Université des Antilles, Guadeloupe, France. Several calculations were run in the computer clusters Brutus and Euler at ETH, Zürich, Switzerland. The informatics service at InSTEC, Havana, Cuba is gratefully acknowledged for allowing communications with calculation centers overseas. The authors also wish to express their gratitude for the financial support provided by the project TATARCOP-InSTEC, Havana, and to the Cooperation Service of the French Embassy in Havana, Cuba.

Supplementary material

894_2017_3488_MOESM1_ESM.docx (399 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 398 kb)


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Instituto Superior de Tecnologías y Ciencias AplicadasUniversidad de La HabanaPlaza de la RevoluciónCuba
  2. 2.Department of Chemistry and Applied Biosciences, Laboratory of Inorganic ChemistryETH ZürichZurichSwitzerland
  3. 3.Laboratoire COVACHIM M2EEA 3592 Université des AntillesPointe-à-Pitrex CEDEXFrance

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