Photoswitching the cytotoxic properties of platinum(II) compounds

Angew Chem Int Ed Engl. 2015 Apr 7;54(15):4561-5. doi: 10.1002/anie.201412157. Epub 2015 Feb 16.


The photoactivation of potential anticancer metal complexes is a hot topic of current research as it may lead to the development of more selective drugs. Photoactivated chemotherapy (PACT) with coordination compounds is usually based on a (photo)chemical reaction taking place at the metal center. Herein, a new strategy is exploited that consists of "photomodifying" a ligand coordinated to metal ions. Platinum(II) complexes from photoswitchable 1,2-dithienylethene-containing ligands have been prepared, which exhibit two interconvertible photoisomeric forms that present distinct DNA-interacting properties and cytotoxic behaviors.

Keywords: cancer; cytotoxicity; drug design; photochemistry; platinum.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / chemistry*
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • DNA / metabolism
  • Drug Design
  • Humans
  • Models, Molecular
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Organoplatinum Compounds / chemistry*
  • Organoplatinum Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Photosensitizing Agents / chemistry*
  • Photosensitizing Agents / pharmacology*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Organoplatinum Compounds
  • Photosensitizing Agents
  • DNA