A Hand-held Fiber-optic Implement for the Site-specific Delivery of Photosensitizer and Singlet Oxygen


Corresponding author email: agreer@brooklyn.cuny.edu (Alexander Greer)


We have constructed a fiber optic device that internally flows triplet oxygen and externally produces singlet oxygen, causing a reaction at the (Z)-1,2-dialkoxyethene spacer group, freeing a pheophorbide sensitizer upon the fragmentation of a reactive dioxetane intermediate. The device can be operated and sensitizer photorelease observed using absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy. We demonstrate the preference of sensitizer photorelease when the probe tip is in contact with octanol or lipophilic media. A first-order photocleavage rate constant of 1.13 h−1 was measured in octanol where dye desorption was not accompanied by readsorption. When the probe tip contacts aqueous solution, the photorelease was inefficient because most of the dye adsorbed on the probe tip, even after the covalent ethene spacer bonds have been broken. The observed stability of the free sensitizer in lipophilic media is reasonable even though it is a pyropheophorbide-a derivative that carries a p-formylbenzylic alcohol substituent at the carboxylic acid group. In octanol or lipid systems, we found that the dye was not susceptible to hydrolysis to pyropheophorbide-a, otherwise a pH effect was observed in a binary methanol-water system (9:1) at pH below 2 or above 8.