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Structure and Hydrogen-Bonding Ability of Estrogens Studied in the Gas Phase

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journal contribution
posted on 19.12.2013, 00:00 by Fumiya Morishima, Yoshiya Inokuchi, Takayuki Ebata
The structures of estrogens (estrone­(E1), β-estradiol­(E2), and estriol­(E3)) and their 1:1 hydrogen-bonded (hydrated) clusters with water formed in supersonic jets have been investigated by various laser spectroscopic methods and quantum chemical calculations. In the S1–S0 electronic spectra, all three species exhibit the band origin in the 35 050–35 200 cm–1 region. By use of ultraviolet–ultraviolet hole-burning (UV–UV HB) spectroscopy, two conformers, four conformers, and eight conformers, arising from different orientation of OH group(s) in the A-ring and D-ring, are identified for estrone, β-estradiol, and estriol, respectively. The infrared–ultraviolet double-resonance (IR–UV DR) spectra in the OH stretching vibration are observed to discriminate different conformers of the D-ring OH for β-estradiol and estriol, and it is suggested that in estriol only the intramolecular hydrogen bonded conformer exists in the jet. For the 1:1 hydrated cluster of estrogens, the S1–S0 electronic transition energies are quite different depending on whether the water molecule is bound to A-ring OH or D-ring OH. It is found that the water molecule prefers to form an H-bond to the A-ring OH for estrone and β-estradiol due to the higher acidity of phenolic OH than that of the alcoholic OH. On the other hand, in estriol the water molecule prefers to be bound to the D-ring OH due to the formation of a stable ring-structure H-bonding network with two OH groups. Thus, the substitution of one hydroxyl group to the D-ring drastically changes the hydrogen-bonding preference of estrogens.

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