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Acridinium Salt Based Fluorescent and Colorimetric Chemosensor for the Detection of Cyanide in Water

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journal contribution
posted on 2006-12-07, 00:00 authored by Young-Keun Yang, Jinsung Tae
A new, selective chemosensor has been developed to detect cyanide in water at micromolar concentrations. The acridinium salt used in this sensor system is prepared in a single step from an acridine orange base. Detection is based on the irreversible, 1:1 stoichiometric, nucleophilic addition of cyanide to the 9-position of the acridinium ion. This process induces a large decrease in fluorescence intensity and a marked color change. The selectivity of the system in aqueous media for CN- over other anions is remarkably high. Also, the sensitivity of both the fluorescence- and colorimetric-based assay is below the 1.9 μM suggested by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the maximum allowable cyanide concentration in drinking water. Thus, the chemodosimeter should be applicable as a practical system for the monitoring of CN- concentrations in aqueous samples.

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