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Chemistry. 2018 May 22. doi: 10.1002/chem.201802010. [Epub ahead of print]

ESIPT-Modulated Emission of Lanthanide Complexes: Different Energy-Transfer Pathways and Multiple Responses.

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MOE Laboratory of Bioinorganic and Synthetic Chemistry, Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275, P.R. China.
College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Collaborative Innovation Center of Functionalized Probes for, Chemical Imaging, Key Laboratory of Molecular and Nano Probes, Ministry of Education, Shandong Normal University, Jinan, 250014, P.R. China.
State Key Laboratory of Applied Organic Chemistry, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou, 730000, P.R. China.


Two series of isostructural lanthanide coordination complexes, namely, LIFM-42(Ln) (Ln=Eu, Tb, Gd, in which LIFM stands for the Lehn Institute of Functional Materials) and LIFM-43(Ln) (Ln=Er, Yb), were synthesized through the self-assembly of an excited-state intramolecular proton transfer (ESIPT) ligand, 5-[2-(5-fluoro-2-hydroxyphenyl)-4,5-bis(4-fluorophenyl)-1H-imidazol-1-yl]isophthalic acid (H2 hpi2cf), with different lanthanide ions. In the coordination structures linked by the ligands and oxo-bridged LnIII2 clusters (for LIFM-42(Ln) series) or isolated LnIII ions (for LIFM-43(Ln) series), the ESIPT ligand can serve as both the host and antenna for protecting and sensitizing the photoluminescence (PL) of LnIII ions. Meanwhile, the -OH⋅⋅⋅N active sites on the ligands are vacant, which provides availability to systematically explore the PL behavior of Ln complexes with ESIPT interference. Based on the accepting levels of different lanthanide ions, energy transfer can occur from the T1 (K*) or T1 (E*) (K*=excited keto form, E*=excited enol form) excited states of the ligand. Furthermore, the sensitized lanthanide luminescence in both visible and near-infrared regions, as well as the remaining K* emission of the ligand, can be modulated by the ESIPT responsiveness to different solvents, anions, and temperature.


energy transfer; lanthanides; luminescence; photochemistry; proton transfer


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