Our paper on a family of fluorescent single-site ion pair receptors was published in Dalton Transactions. and featured on the journal's cover (left)!
This family of ion pair sensors, prepared by our long-time collaborator Dr. Karl Wallace at the University of Southern Mississippi, is based on a rhodamine fluorescent scaffold containing a tunable cation binding motif. Our work demonstrated that the spectroscopic influence of any bound metal cations can be modulated by their counter-anions, through weaker secondary interactions in the metal's outer coordination sphere.
We elucidated the structural origin and properties of these interactions, and we also showed that they can be used to distinguish both the cation and the anion simultaneously by application of our trademark multivariate data analysis methods to the data set obtained from exposing these receptors to a panel of nine metal salts.