Ternary copper(II) complexes [Cu(L1)B](ClO4) (1, 2) and [Cu(L2)B](ClO4) (3, 4), where HL1 and HL2 are tridentate NSO- and ONO-donor Schiff bases and B is a heterocyclic base, viz. dipyrido[3,2-d:2′,3<-f]quinoxaline (dpq, 1 and 3) or dipyrido[3,2-a:2′,3′-c]phenazine (dppz, 2 and 4), were prepared and their DNA binding and photoinduced DNA cleavage activity studied. Complex 1, structurally characterized by single-crystal X-ray crystallography, shows an axially elongated square-pyramidal (4 + 1) coordination geometry in which the monoanionic L1 binds at the equatorial plane. The NN-donor dpq ligand exhibits an axial-equatorial binding mode. The complexes display good binding propensity to calf thymus DNA, giving a relative order 2 (NSO-dppz) > 4 (ONO-dppz) > 1 (NSO-dpq) > 3 (ONO-dpq). They cleave supercoiled pUC19 DNA to its nicked circular form when treated with 3-mercaptopropionic acid (MPA) by formation of hydroxyl radicals as the cleavage active species under dark reaction conditions. The photoinduced DNA cleavage activity of the complexes was investigated using UV radiation of 365 nm and red light of 633, 647.1, and 676.4 nm (CW He-Ne and Ar-Kr mixed gas ion laser sources) in the absence of MPA. Complexes 1 and 2, having photoactive NSO-donor Schiff base and dpq/dppz ligands, show dual photosensitizing effects involving both the photoactive ligands in the ternary structure with significantly better cleavage properties when compared to those of 3 and 4, having only photoactive dpq/dppz ligands. Involvement of singlet oxygen in the light-induced DNA cleavage reactions is proposed. A significant enhancement of the red-light-induced DNA cleavage activity is observed for the dpq and dppz complexes containing the sulfur ligand when compared to their earlier reported phen (1,10-phenanthroline) analogue. Enhancement of the cleavage activity on photoexposure at the d-d band indicates the occurrence of metal-assisted photosensitization processes involving the LMCT and d-d band in the ternary structure.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry