Effects of ionic liquids on the acetylcholinesterase – a structure–activity relationship consideration
Ionic liquids are discussed as sustainable green solvents, but toxicity and ecotoxicity data are rare. In this paper we present our results for different ionic liquids with the acetylcholinesterase inhibition assay. The results show that the acetylcholinesterase can be inhibited by ionic liquids containing a cation with a positively charged nitrogen and a certain lipophilicity. We tested imidazolium ionic liquids with different alkyl chains at R1 and R2 as well as with different anions and compared these results with our findings for other cation structures such as pyridinium ionic liquids and phosphonium ionic liquids. According to our results imidazolium and pyridinium ionic liquids inhibit the purified enzyme with EC50 values as low as 13 μM. The bulky phosphonium ionic liquids were less inhibitory. These results can be rationalized by structure–activity relationship considerations.