Exploring BODIPY Derivatives as Singlet Oxygen Photosensitizers for PDT

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This minireview is devoted to honoring the memory of Dr. Thomas Dougherty, a pioneer of modern photodynamic therapy (PDT). It compiles the most important inputs made by our research group since 2012 in the development of new photosensitizers based on BODIPY chromophore which, thanks to the rich BODIPY chemistry, allows a finely tuned design of the photophysical properties of this family of dyes to serve as efficient photosensitizers for the generation of singlet oxygen. These two factors, photophysical tuning and workable chemistry, have turned BODIPY chromophore as one of the most promising dyes for the development of improved photosensitizers for PDT. In this line, this minireview is mainly related to the establishment of chemical methods and structural designs for enabling efficient singlet oxygen generation in BODIPYs. The approaches include the incorporation of heavy atoms, such as halogens (iodine or bromine) in different number and positions on the BODIPY scaffold, and also transition metal atoms, by their complexation with Ir(III) center, for instance. On the other hand, low‐toxicity approaches, without involving heavy metals, have been developed by preparing several orthogonal BODIPY dimers with different substitution patterns. The advantages and drawbacks of all these diverse molecular designs based on BODIPY structural framework are described.
This article is part of a Special Issue dedicated to Dr. Thomas Dougherty. Version of Record online: 20 April 2020, Accepted manuscript online: 20 February 2020, Manuscript accepted: 20 December 2019, Manuscript received: 30 September 2019. This is the peer reviewed version, which has been published in final form at []. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.