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Organometallic rhodium(III) and iridium(III) cyclopentadienyl complexes with curcumin and bisdemethoxycurcumin co-ligands

A series of half-sandwich cyclopentadienyl rhodium(III) and iridium(III) complexes of the type [Cp*M(curc/bdcurc) Cl] and [Cp*M(curc/bdcurc)(PTA)][SO3CF3], in which Cp* = pentamethylcyclopentadienyl, curcH = curcumin and bdcurcH = bisdemethoxycurcumin as O boolean AND O-chelating ligands, and PTA = 1,3,5-triaza-7-phosphaadamantane, is described. The X-ray crystal structures of three of the complexes, i.e. [Cp*Rh( curc)(PTA)][SO3CF3] (5), [Cp*Rh(bdcurc)(PTA)][SO3CF3] (6) and [Cp*Ir(bdcurc)(PTA)][SO3CF3] (8), confirm the expected "piano-stool" geometry. With the exception of 5, the complexes are stable under pseudophysiological conditions and are moderately cytotoxic to human ovarian carcinoma (A2780 and A2780cisR) cells and also to non-tumorigenic human embryonic kidney (HEK293) cells, but lack the cancer cell selectivity observed for related arene ruthenium(II) complexes.

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