Nano Research

, Volume 4, Issue 2, pp 204–215 | Cite as

Facile and scalable synthesis of a highly hydroxylated water-soluble fullerenol as a single nanoparticle

  • Ken Kokubo
  • Shogo Shirakawa
  • Naoki Kobayashi
  • Hisae Aoshima
  • Takumi Oshima
Research Article


A water-soluble polyhydroxylated fullerene, i.e. a fullerenol, with 44 hydroxyl groups and 8 secondary bound water molecules, C60(OH)44·8H2O (estimated average structure), has been synthesized in a facile one step reaction from pristine C60 by hydroxylation with hydrogen peroxide in the presence of a phase-transfer catalyst, tetra-n-butylammonium hydroxide (TBAH), under organic/aqueous bilayer conditions. The fullerenol exhibited high water solubility, up to 64.9 mg/mL, under neutral (pH = 7) conditions. Dynamic light-scattering (DLS) analysis showed a narrow particle size distribution, of 1–2 nm, indicating that the fullerenol had high dispersion properties in water. The results of particle size analyses, which both focused on a single nanoregion and were conducted using a novel induced grating (IG) method and a scanning probe microscope (SPM), were consistent with the DLS results. A plausible reaction mechanism, which includes fullerene oxide intermediates detected by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS), has been proposed.


Fullerene fullerenol hydroxyl group nanoparticle water solubility 


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Supplementary material

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Copyright information

© Tsinghua University Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ken Kokubo
    • 1
  • Shogo Shirakawa
    • 1
  • Naoki Kobayashi
    • 1
  • Hisae Aoshima
    • 2
  • Takumi Oshima
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Applied Chemistry, Graduate School of EngineeringOsaka UniversitySuita, OsakaJapan
  2. 2.Vitamin C60 BioResearch CorporationTokyoJapan

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