Journal of Sol-Gel Science and Technology

, Volume 79, Issue 2, pp 395–404 | Cite as

Magnetic core–shell nanoparticles coated with a molecularly imprinted organogel for organophosphate hydrolysis

  • Davide Carboni
  • Barbara Lasio
  • Luca Malfatti
  • Plinio Innocenzi
Original Paper: Sol-gel and hybrid materials for catalytic, photoelectrochemical and sensor applications


Catalytic core–shell nanoparticles were obtained by coating an iron oxide core with a hybrid organic–inorganic silica shell using vinyl-triethoxy-silane and amino-propyl-triethoxy-silane. The amino group was further functionalised with arginine, used as catalytic moiety for the inactivation of organophosphate pesticides through hydrolysis. By exploiting the vinyl groups of the organosilica as anchorage, an additional outer layer made by molecularly imprinted organogel was built up through high-dilution radical polymerisation. The resulting organogel contains the imprinting complex, which derives from the guanidinium groups of the arginine and the organophosphate used as molecular template. The removal of the organophosphate from the imprinted cavities allowed obtaining core–shell magnetic nanoparticles with a molecularly imprinted acrylamide-based outer layer. These nanoparticles are capable of hydrolysing the commercial pesticide Paraoxon with a reaction rate 50 % faster than the corresponding background hydrolysis.

Graphical Abstract


Magnetic core–shell nanoparticles Molecularly imprinted organogels Organophosphate pesticides Catalytic nanomaterials 



The Sardinian Regional Government (R.A.S.) is kindly acknowledged for funding D.C. through P.O.R. SARDEGNA F.S.E. 2007–2013—Obiettivo competitività regionale e occupazione, Asse IV Capitale umano, Linea di Attività 3.1.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Davide Carboni
    • 1
  • Barbara Lasio
    • 1
  • Luca Malfatti
    • 1
  • Plinio Innocenzi
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratorio di Scienza dei Materiali e Nanotecnologie, LMNT - D.A.D.U., CR-INSTMUniversità di SassariAlgheroItaly

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