Nothing new under the sun, as the bard said, and how true it is sometimes. No sooner had I posted a news article on spectroscopynow.com entitled “Sweet sense of GOD” than Santhosh Challa, a Senior Scientist at Merck & Co in New Jersey, USA, got in touch
to tell me that his team had also recently published work on a similar technique using ionic liquids in glucose sensing. In the “GOD” work, researchers had developed a glucose sensor based on a room-temperature ionic liquid rather than a conventional solvent to give it much better acid-resistance than other sensors used in diabetes and blood sugar monitoring.
Challa and his team seem to have extended the concept somewhat. “In this particular work, we applied an amino acid based fluorescent ionic liquid, that shows not only the capability of differentiating between enantiomeric forms of glucose, but also show the capability of differentiating between different kinds sugars like glucose and mannose,” explained Challa. “This particular ionic liquid is also fluorescent, so its reporting nature is highly useful in sensing fluorescent and as well as non-fluorescent enantiomeric forms of drugs.”
The team also applied multi-dimensional fluorescent studies and statistical analysis to demonstrate that their approach can show these capabilities in the millimolar range. They also explain in detail the studies needed to explain the fluorescence phenomenon and to use the complex spectral properties to their advantage in chiral sugar sensing.
Bwambok, D., Challa, S., Lowry, M., & Warner, I. (2010). Amino Acid-Based Fluorescent Chiral Ionic Liquid for Enantiomeric Recognition Analytical Chemistry, 82 (12), 5028-5037 DOI: 10.1021/ac9027774