Date of Graduation

Spring 2022


Master of Science in Chemistry


Chemistry and Biochemistry

Committee Chair

Nikolay Gerasimchuk


Antibiotic-resistant pathogenic microorganisms (such as MRSA and alike) represent a real and significant threat to the health and wellbeing of the general population. The search for new compounds of non-antibiotic nature that act as antimicrobial agents is an important task with obvious practical applications in the biomedical field. Metal-based coordination and organometallic compounds that demonstrate antimicrobial activity was found to exhibit a completely different mode of action compared to antibiotics. That suggests the absence of the mechanism of developing tolerance to these types of compounds at least for 30 - 40 years. Thus, there are numerous organotin (IV), silver (I), copper (II) and arsenic (III) compounds that have been extensively studied with that goal in the past. However, most of them are toxic to biological species. On the contrary, organoantimony (III, V) compounds possess much lower general toxicity but demonstrate appreciable antimicrobial properties and better body clearance. Unfortunately, there is still an insufficient amount of information regarding the latter class of compounds. Our research group’s previous experience clearly identified cyanoximes – compounds with the general formula NC-C(=NOH)-R, with R being an electron-withdrawing group – as potent biologically active compounds. These small molecules also act as very good ligands binding a variety of metal ions and metalloids with many compounds showing a good potential for biomedical applications. Except for one publication in 2000, there are no investigations of any kind of Sb-based compounds with oxime-bearing ligands. Therefore, the goal of the proposed research is to synthesize and characterize a series of antimony complexes with some specifically selected biologically active cyanoximes structures. All the synthesized novel compounds were characterized by elemental analysis (C,H,N), IR & NMR spectroscopy, thermal analysis (TG/DSC), and x-ray crystallography. The biological activity of the synthesized compounds was tested against bacterial strains MRSA, PAO1, and E. coli. Optical density (OD) was used to measure microbial cell growth, at a wavelength of 600 nm (OD600).


cyanoximates, MRSA, biologically active, organoantimony, cytotoxicity, toxicity, antimicrobial activity, cell growth, thermal analysis, diastereomers

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© Seth Adu Amankrah

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