Bio-inspired functional chemicals
The world around us is a rich source of solutions for the maintenance of life, whose mechanisms are often not fully understood. Natural phenomena are, however, the macroscopic result of a multitude of chemical and physical transformations. The advancement of methodology for chemical synthesis, modern steady-state and time-resolved spectroscopic measurements and the application of theoretical models allow us to understand how the electronic and structural characteristics of a particular chemical species determine its function(s) in Nature.
Our research group at the Institute of Chemistry of the University of São Paulo in Brazil is dedicated to the multidisciplinary investigation of natural phenomena related to the absorption and emission of light. We are particularly interested in fluorescent flowers that are pigmented by betalains. Our studies are leading to a deeper understanding of the molecular interactions that modulate the electronic properties of betalains in condensed phases and of the relationship between the occurrence of betalains in plants and their biological roles, as well as the rationale for the mutual exclusion of betalains and anthocyanins in plants. Our ultimate goal is to create novel bio-inspired chemical systems that have the potential for advanced technological applications such as fluorescent probes for live cell imaging, new classes of antioxidants, biocompatible and biodegradable surfactants and intelligent materials.
Articles in scientific journals
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35. Mendes LF, Zambotti-Villela L, Yokoya NS, Bastos EL, Stevani CV et al. (2013) Prediction of mono-, bi-, and trivalent metal cation relative toxicity to the seaweed Gracilaria domingensis (Gracilariales, Rhodophyta) in synthetic seawater. Environ Toxicol Chem 32: 2571-2575.
34. Lima FS, Cuccovia IM, Horinek D, Amaral LQ, Riske KA et al. (2013) Effect of counterions on the shape, hydration, and degree of order at the interface of cationic micelles: the triflate case. Langmuir 29: 4193-4203.
23. Malaspina T, Fileti EE, Bastos EL (2011) Effect of solute flexibility and polarization on the solvatochromic shift of a brominated merocyanine dye in water: a sequential MD/QM study. Int J Quantum Chem 111: 1607-1615.
19. Ciscato LFML, Bastos EL, Bartoloni FH, Gunther W, Weiss D et al. (2010) Synthesis of some fenchyl-substituted alkenes and enol-ethers containing 3-oxyphenyl substituents by the Barton-Kellogg reaction. J Brazil Chem Soc 21: 1896-1904.
16. Alves WA, Matos IO, Takahashi PM, Bastos EL, Martinho H et al. (2009) A chloro-bridged linear chain imine-copper(II) complex and its application as an enzyme-free amperometric biosensor for hydrogen peroxide. Eur J Inorg Chem: 2219-2228.
14. Martins CT, Lima MS, Bastos EL, El Seoud OA (2008) Thermo-solvatochromism of merocyanine polarity probes – what are the consequences of increasing probe lipophilicity through annelation? Eur J Org Chem: 1165-1180.
12. Silva PL, Bastos EL, El Seoud OA (2007) Solvation in binary mixtures of water and polar aprotic solvents: Theoretical calculations of the concentrations of solvent-water hydrogen-bonded species and application to thermosolvatochromism of polarity probes. J Phys Chem B 111: 6173-6180, correction: J Phys Chem B 112: 187-187.
11. El Seoud OA, Pires PAR, Abdel-Moghny T, Bastos EL (2007) Synthesis and micellar properties of surface-active ionic liquids: 1-alkyl-3-methylimidazolium chlorides. J Colloid Interf Sci 313: 296-304.
10. Bastos EL, Ciscato LFML, Bartoloni FH, Catalani LH, Romoff P et al. (2007) Studies on PVP hydrogel-supported luminol chemiluminescence: 2. Luminometer calibration and potential analytical applications. Luminescence 22: 126-133.
9. Bastos EL, Ciscato LFML, Bartoloni FH, Catalani LH, Baader WJ (2007) Studies on PVP hydrogel-supported luminol chemiluminescence: 1. Kinetic and mechanistic aspects using multivariate factorial analysis. Luminescence 22: 113-125.
6. Bastos EL, Silva PL, El Seoud OA (2006) Thermosolvatochromism of betaine dyes revisited: theoretical calculations of the concentrations of alcohol-water hydrogen-bonded species and application to solvation in aqueous alcohols. J Phys Chem A 110: 10287-10295, correction: J Phys Chem A 110: 13122-13122.
5. Bastos EL, Monteiro Leite Ciscato LF, Weiss D, Beckert R, Baader WJ (2006) Comparison of convenient alternative synthetic approaches to 4-[(3-tert-Butyldimethylsilyloxy)phenyl]-4-methoxyspiro[1,2-dioxetane-3,2 ‘-adamantane]. Synthesis-Stuttgart: 1781-1786.
8. Bastos, E. L., Bartoloni, F. H., Gonçalves, L. C. P.. (2014) Acid Base and Solvation Properties of Metal Phenolates. In: Jacob Zabicky. (Org.). The Chemistry of Metal Phenolates. Chichester: Wiley, 1: 191-262.
7. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Four-Membered Cyclic Peroxides (1,2-Dioxetanes, 1,2-Dioxetanones). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 323-344.
6. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Five-Membered Cyclic Peroxides with No Further Heteroatoms in the Ring (1,2-Dioxolanes and 1,2-Dioxolan-3-ones). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 345-378.
5. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Five-Membered Cyclic Peroxides with One Further Oxygen Atom in the Ring (1,2,4-Trioxolanes). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 379-396.
4. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Six-Membered Cyclic Peroxides with No Further Heteroatoms in the Ring (1,2-Dioxanes and 3,6-Dihydro-1,2-dioxins). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 397-420.
3. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Six-Membered Cyclic Peroxides with One Further Oxygen Atom in the Ring (1,2,4-Trioxanes). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 421-448.
2. Baader, W. J., Bastos, E. L.. (2008) Six-Membered Cyclic Peroxides with Two Further Oxygen Atoms in the Ring (1,2,4,5-Tetroxanes). In: Berkessel, A.. (Org.). Science of Synthesis: Houben-Weyl Methods of Molecular Transformations. Stuttgart: Thieme Chemistry, 38: 449-468.
1. Baader, W. J., Stevani, C. V., Bastos, E. L.. (2006) Chemiluminescence of Organic Peroxides. In: Zvi Rappoport. (Org.). The Chemistry of Peroxides. Chichester: Wiley, 1211-1278.
+ Water-thermostatized 18-cell holder, remote DRA (diffuse reflectance accessory) with video bundle, quartz dip probe fiber optic (o.p.: 10 mm), torlon dip probe fiber optic (o.p.: 2, 5, and 10 mm), Color software.
+ Peltier thermostatized 4-cell holder, microplate reader accessory.
Spex Fluorolog II Spectrofluorometer
+ Peltier thermostatized cell holder.
+ Water-thermostatized cell holder, quartz dewar for low temperature measurements (77K).
+ Polarizing filter set, nF920 ultrafast nanosecond flashlamp (100 ps – 50 ms).
+ spectroelectrochemistry accessory (200 – 1100 nm, 2048 px CCD detection), 10 mA to 10 nA limit, interface for screen-printed electrodes.
CEM Discover monomode laboratory microwave reactor
High Performance Computing Cluster
Rubinho, 4x AMD Opteron 6376 16-core 2.3GHz, 16x 8GB DDR3 1600 MHz, 6x HD 1TB SATA 6 Gb/s.
Remote access to the following clusters: Bachianas (UFABC, Altix 4700, 136 Itanium 2 cores), Cromo (UFABC, 52 Xeon cores), Cobalto (UFABC, 176 Xeon cores), Puma (LCCA-USP, 472 Xeon cores), Jaguar (LCCA-USP, 56 Itanium 2 cores).
+ pH, conductance and photometric sensor, water-thermostated electrochemical cell (5 – 70 mL).
+ F15-6×100 rotor, Microliter 30 x 2 mL sealed rotor, swinging bucket rotor TX200.
Erick Bastos is a chemist interested in fluorescent plants and other extraordinary natural phenomena.Read More
Ana Clara is a doctoral student working on the interaction between betalains and biomembranes.Read More
Ana Paula is a doctoral student working on the photophysical characterization of encapsulated betalains.Read More
Barbara is a doctoral student working on the synthesis and photophysical characterization of betalains.Read More
Nathana is a doctorate student working on the semisynthesis of fluorescent probes.Read More
Karina is a master student working on the antiradical properties of betalains and derivatives.Read More
Larissa is a master student working on the interactions between betalains and ions.Read More
Amanda is a fourth year chemistry student awarded a FAPESP undergraduate research fellowship.Read More
Carolina is a second year pharmacy/biochemistry student at the University of Sao Paulo.Read More
Caroline is a fourth year chemistry student awarded a CNPq-PIBIC undergraduate research fellowship.Read More
Luiza is a second year chemical engineering student at the University of São Paulo.Read More
Dr. LETÍCIA CHRISTINA GONÇALVES
2007 – 2012 (Ph.D.), 2013 (Post-doc)
Postdoctoral fellow, Prof. M. Mihovilovic.
Vienna University of Technology, Austria.
Dr. FRANCES STÖCKNER
2010 – 2011 (Post-doc)
Dr. THACIANA MALASPINA
2012 – 2013 (Post-doc)
Dr. FERNANDO BARTOLONI
2012 – 2013 (Post-doc)
M.Sc. MARCO AURÉLIO TRASSI
2010 – 2012 (M.Sc.)
M.Sc. MONICA SANTOS
2007 – 2009 (M.Sc.)
We have positions open at all levels, including visiting professors, post-docs, graduate students and undergraduate students. Independent, creative and motivated people (who really enjoy scientific discovery) are welcome to apply.
Students looking for graduate or undergraduate research projects are encouraged to contact us to arrange an interview. Candidates for both the M.Sc or Ph.D programs must be admitted as graduate students of either the Institute of Chemistry of the University of São Paulo (IQ-USP) or the Center for Natural and Human Sciences of the Federal University of ABC (CCNH-UFABC). Entrance exams at both institutions are administered every six months (February and July) and can be replaced by the GRE Chemistry test. In our group, the M.Sc takes about 24 months to complete, whereas around 48 months are required to finish a Ph.D. M.Sc students may transfer to Ph.D depending on the project development. Postdocs are welcome to contact us any time of the year. Excellent candidates are encouraged to seek fellowship support and apply.
São Paulo is one of the most important economic centers of Brazil and one of the largest cities in the world. Students and researchers from other countries are welcome to apply and will certainly have a rich cultural and scientific experience here.
Institute of Chemistry, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil
Av. Prof. Lineu Prestes, 748, Bl. 4S, office 460 and lab 477
05508-000 São Paulo, SP, Brasil
Phone: +55(11) 3091.9133 (Office) | +55(11) 3091.9165 (Lab)