What is it about?

This project delineates the inclusion complexes of Anthracene and Phenanthrene with cucurbit[n]urils (CBn) to allow for their analysis in food samples. The interaction of PAHs with CBn enhances their solubility in aqueous media, increasing their fluorescence emission. Based on this, an analytical procedure will be developed to analyze these compounds in food and beverages such as coffee.

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Why is it important?

PAHs are toxic compounds that can be generated in food and beverages due to the heating of fats. Nowadays roasted food such as barbecues is common practice. The overcooking may result in the contamination of food with PAHs leading to serious health impacts. The analysis of such contaminants in the food samples is challenging and may involve long extraction procedures. In this work we developed an inclusion complex of PAHs with CBn to serve as a platform for the development of direct methods of analysis of these toxic substances in food and beverages.


What makes the use of cucurbit[n[]uril attractive is the ease of preparation and purification of these compounds using commercially available reagents. Additionally, they are capable of forming complexes with a wide range of neutral and cationic compounds with high stability.

Professor FakhrEldin O. Suliman
Sultan Qaboos University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Investigating the Interaction of Anthracene and Phenanthrene with Cucurbit[ n ]urils (n=6‐8): Experimental and Molecular Dynamics Studies, ChemistrySelect, October 2022, Wiley,
DOI: 10.1002/slct.202203043.
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