Influence of Solvent Polarizability on the Keto-Enol Equilibrium in 4-[5-(naphthalen-1-ylmethyl)-1,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yl]benzene-1,3-diol

Abstract

This work presents spectroscopic studies of the keto–enol equilibrium induced by solvent polarizability in 4-[5-(naphthalen-1-ylmethyl)-1,3,4-thiadiazol-2-yl]benzene-1,3-diol a strong antiproliferative and anticancer thiadiazol derivative. Electronic absorption, steady state and time resolved fluorescence, and infrared spectroscopies were applied to investigate the keto and enol forms of this compound in a series of polar and non-polar solvents. The enol form dominates in polar solvents while, surprisingly, the keto form dominates in non-polar solvents with high average electric dipole polarizability e.g. n-alkenes. The electronic absorption spectrum of this derivative is more dependent on spatially averaged electric dipole polarizability of the solvent than on Kirkwood’s correlation or on Lorenz-Lorenz electric polarizability. By analogy of n-alkanes to the alkyl parts of lipids, one can expect that the transformation of 1,3,4-thiadiazoles to the keto form may be facilitated in the hydrophobic core of the lipid membrane. Such a transition may be of great practical importance for the design of biologically active pharmaceutics, which are able to interact with the hydrophobic regions of cell membranes in a specific manner.