Chemical and Biological Studies on Haematoporphyrin Derivative: An Unexpected Photosensitisation in Brain

  • R. Bonnett
  • M. C. Berenbaum
  • H. Kaur


The porphyrins are a group of heteroaromatic compounds possessing the parent skeleton shown in structure (1). Although it can be oxidised and reduced, this skeleton in general shows considerable stability. It is characterised by an absorption spectrum possessing a very strong band (the Soret band) at about 400 nm, and (generally) four further bands in the region 500 nm to 600 nm. The electronically excited state (S1) of the porphyrin system follows two pathways, radiative and (initially) nonradiative. The radiative pathway generates the ground state by energy emission (characteristically a red fluorescence, a very sensitive test for the porphyrin system in the absence of a coordinated transition metal ion), while intersystem crossing generates the triplet state, which is capable of sensitising the formation of singlet oxygen.


Singlet Oxygen Photodynamic Action Ethyl Vinyl Cranial Nerve Nucleus Haematoporphyrin Derivative 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Bonnett
    • 1
  • M. C. Berenbaum
    • 2
  • H. Kaur
    • 1
  1. 1.Chemistry DepartmentQueen Mary CollegeLondonUK
  2. 2.Pathology DepartmentSt. Mary’s Hospital Medical SchoolLondonUK

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