Antimicrobial and antiviral materials based on singlet oxygen photosensitizing metal clusters.
The fight against infective microorganism is becoming a worldwide priority as the recent COVID19 crisis has demonstrated. There is a serious concern with regards to the ever-increasing resistance of pathogens to antibiotics and other synthetic drugs. In this context, the photosensitized inactivation of pathogens by photoproduced cytotoxic singlet oxygen has become an attractive strategy, allowing for the fabrication of self-sterilizing surfaces of articles of every-day use. We have developed a class of photosensitizers based on octahedral transition metal cluster complexes which, in contrast to commonly used organic photosensitizers, remain good producers of singlet oxygen even in the solid state. In this project, we are aiming at the design of materials with antimicrobial and antiviral functions upon daylight containing these complexes as standalone molecules or incorporated into nanoparticles, films, and textiles. The proposed international collaboration will speed-up the discovery of efficient light-sterilizing materials by combining complementary skills and resources