Thermodynamic stability, kinetic inertness and relaxometric properties of monoamide derivatives of lanthanide(iii) DOTA complexes†
A complete thermodynamic and kinetic solution study on lanthanide(III) complexes with monoacetamide (DOTAMA, L1) and monopropionamide (DOTAMAP, L2) derivatives of DOTA (DOTA = 1,4,7,10-tetraazacyclododecane-1,4,7,10-tetraacetic acid) was undertaken with the aim to elucidate their stability and inertness in aqueous media. The stability constants of GdL1 and GdL2 are comparable, whereas a more marked difference is found in the kinetic inertness of the two complexes. The formation of the Eu(III) and Ce(III) complexes takes place via the formation of the protonated intermediates which can deprotonate and transform into the final complex through a OH− assisted pathway. GdL2 shows faster rates of acid catalysed decomplexation with respect to GdL1, which has a kinetic inertness comparable to GdDOTA. Nevertheless, GdL2 is one order of magnitude more inert than GdDO3A. A novel DOTAMAP-based bifunctional chelating ligand and its deoxycholic acid derivative (L5) were also synthesized. Since the coordinated water molecule in GdL2 is characterized by an exchange rate ca. two orders of magnitude greater than in GdL1, the relaxivity of the macromolecular derivatives of GdL5 should not be limited by the slow water exchange process. The relaxometric properties of the supramolecular adduct of GdL5 with human serum albumin (HSA) were investigated in aqueous solution by measuring the magnetic field dependence of the 1H relaxivity which, at 20 MHz and 298 K, shows a 430% increase over that of the unbound GdL5 chelate. Thus, Gd(III) complexes with DOTAMAP macrocyclic ligands can represent good candidates for the development of stable and highly effective bioconjugate systems for molecular imaging applications.