Jump to main content
Jump to site search

Issue 7, 2015
Previous Article Next Article

The magic of aqueous solutions of ionic liquids: ionic liquids as a powerful class of catanionic hydrotropes

Author affiliations

Abstract

Hydrotropes are compounds able to enhance the solubility of hydrophobic substances in aqueous media and therefore are widely used in the formulation of drugs, cleaning and personal care products. In this work, it is shown that ionic liquids are a new class of powerful catanionic hydrotropes where both the cation and the anion synergistically contribute to increase the solubility of biomolecules in water. The effects of the ionic liquid chemical structures, their concentration and the temperature on the solubility of two model biomolecules, vanillin and gallic acid were evaluated and compared with the performance of conventional hydrotropes. The solubility of these two biomolecules was studied in the entire composition range, from pure water to pure ionic liquids, and an increase in the solubility of up to 40-fold was observed, confirming the potential of ionic liquids to act as hydrotropes. Using dynamic light scattering, NMR and molecular dynamics simulations, it was possible to infer that the enhanced solubility of the biomolecule in the IL aqueous solutions is related to the formation of ionic-liquid–biomolecules aggregates. Finally, it was demonstrated that hydrotropy induced by ionic liquids can be used to recover solutes from aqueous media by precipitation, simply by using water as an anti-solvent. The results reported here have a significant impact on the understanding of the role of ionic liquid aqueous solutions in the extraction of value-added compounds from biomass as well as in the design of novel processes for their recovery from aqueous media.

Graphical abstract: The magic of aqueous solutions of ionic liquids: ionic liquids as a powerful class of catanionic hydrotropes

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 02 Apr 2015, accepted on 19 May 2015 and first published on 21 May 2015


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00712G
Author version available: Download Author version (PDF)
Citation: Green Chem., 2015,17, 3948-3963
  •   Request permissions

    The magic of aqueous solutions of ionic liquids: ionic liquids as a powerful class of catanionic hydrotropes

    A. F. M. Cláudio, M. C. Neves, K. Shimizu, J. N. Canongia Lopes, M. G. Freire and J. A. P. Coutinho, Green Chem., 2015, 17, 3948
    DOI: 10.1039/C5GC00712G

Search articles by author

Spotlight

Advertisements