Triplet Dynamic Nuclear Polarization of Pyruvate via Supramolecular Chemistry

20 January 2023, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) significantly improves the sensitivity of magnetic resonance imaging, and its most important medical application is cancer diagnosis via hyperpolarized 13C-labeled pyruvate. Unlike cryogenic DNP, triplet-DNP uses photoexcited triplet electrons under mild conditions. However, triplet-DNP of pyruvate has not been observed because of incompatibility of the hydrophobic polarizing agent with hydrophilic pyruvate. This work demonstrates that supramolecular complexation with β-cyclodextrin can disperse 4,4′-(pentacene-6,13-diyl)dibenzoate (NaPDBA), a pentacene derivative with hydrophilic substituents, even in the presence of high sodium pyruvate concentrations. The polarization of photoexcited triplet electron spins in NaPDBA was transferred to the 13C spins of sodium pyruvate via triplet-DNP of 1H spins in water and 1H-to-13C cross-polarization. This provides an important step toward the widespread use of ultra-sensitive MRI for cancer diagnosis.


dynamic nuclear polarization
supramolecular chemistry

Supplementary materials

Supporting Information
Materials and Methods, absorption spectra, NMR spectra, NMR signal decays


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