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Keywords:

  • antitumor agents;
  • DNA recognition;
  • platinum;
  • polyamides;
  • synthesis design

Abstract

Two DNA-sequence-selective hairpin polyamide platinum(II) complexes, containing pyrrole and imidazole heterocyclic rings, have been synthesised by different methods. A six-ring complex, selective for (A/T)GGG(A/T) DNA sequences, was made by using solid-phase synthesis, whilst an eight-ring complex, selective for (A/T)CCTG(A/T) DNA sequences, was made by utilising standard wet chemistry. Solid-phase synthesis resulted in a significantly higher yield, required less purification and is more efficient than the wet synthesis; as such, it is the preferred method for further work. The metal complexes were characterised by 1H and 195Pt NMR spectroscopy and ESI mass spectrometry. The two compounds provide a foundation for the synthesis of more complex molecules containing multiple hairpins and/or platinum groups.