Dr. Arkaprabha Konar

"Ultrafast Spectroscopy of Photoactivatable Platinum Complexes"

Near-infrared (NIR) activatable dye conjugated inorganic complexes represent the next generation of photo-protecting groups (PPGs) towards controllable release of biologically active molecules of importance for diverse chemical and biomedical applications. In such applications, active species are in an inactivated form (i.e. caged) within the PPGs. Our central hypothesis is that NIR photoactivation of the conjugated dye ligand initiates a cascade of energy and electron transfer processes leading to the photo-uncaging of the Pt(IV) core and the axial ligands. Upon light irradiation, the active form is released (i.e. uncaged) upon removal of the PPG. The objective of this project is to (i) determine the ultrafast photoinduced energy and electron transfer dynamics in solvated molecules using ultrafast nonlinear spectroscopic techniques and (ii)accurately elucidate the electronic structure and the transition rates by resolving excited state energies and coupling of these complexes using advanced computational methods. The REU student will be involved in sample preparation, setting up ultrafast experiments, data collection and analysis as well as setting up preliminary quantum chemical calculations.