Novel peroxide-based material emits fluorescence in response to stress

Journal Reference:

  1. Yi Lu, Hajime Sugita, Koichiro Mikami, Daisuke Aoki, Hideyuki Otsuka. Mechanochemical Reactions of Bis(9-methylphenyl-9-fluorenyl) Peroxides and Their Applications in Cross-Linked Polymers. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 2021; DOI: 10.1021/jacs.1c08533

In a new paper published in Journal of the American Chemical Society, researchers from Japan have demonstrated the synthesis of a novel organic peroxide mechanophore, bis (9-methylphenyl-9-fluorenyl) peroxide (BMPF), which can be incorporated into a polymer network to release fluorescence. “While there has been little documented research on mechanophores based on organic peroxides so far, our results indicate that BMPF could have excellent potential for application in designing stress-responsive materials,” says Professor Hideyuki Otsuka of Tokyo Tech, who led the study.

Peroxides occur naturally in the human body as the result of the chemical reactions that take place within it, signifying their important role in new chemical processes. Inspired by this, the team synthesized a “peroxide linker” that could easily dissociate into smaller molecules under mechanical stress. They then ground the compound, BMPF, and observed that the solid not only changed color but also released 9-fluorenone, a fluorescent molecule. They then introduced BMPF into a polymer network and found that it retained its ability to release 9-fluorenone. Moreover, the fluorescence could be induced by either grinding or compression. Additionally, they tested the thermal stability of BMPF cross-linked polymers and found that they could withstand temperatures up to 110°C without decomposition.

The team is excited by these findings and their potential to expand the field of peroxide mechanochemistry. “By modifying the current system, we should be able to create other mechanofunctional polymers that can be tuned to release small molecules with special function when exposed to specific stimuli, toward wide-ranging applications in the fields of stress-sensing, imaging, and drug delivery,” comments Prof. Otsuka.

Some interesting consequences to look forward to!

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Novel peroxide-based material emits fluorescence in response to stress

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