Author's School

Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Author's Department/Program



English (en)

Date of Award

Spring 4-25-2013

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Chair and Committee

Dewey Holten


The design, photophysical characteristics and some potential applications of synthetic bacteriochlorins are discussed. Bacteriochlorins: e.g., bacteriochlorophylls) are tetrapyrrole macrocycles with two reduced pyrrole rings, whereas chlorins: e.g., chlorophylls) and porphyrins: e.g., hemes) have one and zero reduced pyrrole rings. Molecular design characteristics are revealed by understanding the effects of substituent types and patterns and the central metal ion on the photophysical properties and electronic structure. These effects are elucidated via studies of the optical absorption and emission spectra and excited-state decay pathways, and analysis of the molecular-orbital characteristics within the four-orbital model. The studies also encompass analysis of the properties of bacteriochlorins as photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy: PDT). The factors studied and correlated include photostability, redox potentials, photophysical properties, electrochemical and molecular-orbital characteristics, reactive-oxygen-species production, photosensitizer cellular uptake and distribution. Collectively, the studies address the design of synthetic bacteriochlorins for solar-energy conversion and photomedicine.


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