4-Trifluoromethyl-substituted coumarins with large Stokes shifts: synthesis, bioconjugates, and their use in super-resolution fluorescence microscopy
Authors: Schill H, Nizamov S, Bottanelli F, Bierwagen J, Belov VN, Hell SW
CellNetworks People: Hell Stefan
Journal: Chemistry. 2013 Dec 2;19(49):16556-65. doi: 10.1002/chem.201302037

Bright and photostable fluorescent dyes with large Stokes shifts are widely used as sensors, molecular probes, and light-emitting markers in chemistry, life sciences, and optical microscopy. In this study, new 7-dialkylamino-4-trifluoromethylcoumarins have been designed for use in bioconjugation reactions and optical microscopy. Their synthesis was based on the Stille reaction of 3-chloro-4-trifluoromethylcoumarins and available (hetero)aryl- or (hetero)arylethenyltin derivatives. Alternatively, the acylation of 2-trifluoroacetyl-5-dialkylaminophenols with available (hetero)aryl- or (hetero)arylethenylacetic acids followed by intramolecular condensation afforded coumarins with 3-(hetero)aryl or 3-[2-(hetero)aryl]ethenyl groups. Hydrophilic properties were provided by the introduction of a sulfonic acid residue or by phosphorylation of a primary hydroxy group attached at C-4 of the 2,2,4-trimethyl-1,2-dihydroquinoline fragment fused to the coumarin fluorophore. For use in immunolabeling procedures, the dyes were decorated with an (activated) carboxy group. The positions of the absorption and emission maxima vary in the ranges 413-480 and 527-668 nm, respectively. The phosphorylated dye, 9,CH=CH-2-py,H, with the 1-(3-carboxypropyl)-4-hydroxymethyl-2,2-dimethyl-1,2-dihydroquinoline fragment fused to the coumarin fluorophore bearing the 3-[2-(2-pyridyl)ethenyl] residue (absorption and emission maxima at 472 and 623 nm, respectively) was used in super-resolution light microscopy with stimulated emission depletion and provided an optical resolution better than 70 nm with a low background signal. As a result of their large Stokes shifts, good fluorescence quantum yields, and adequate photostabilities, phosphorylated coumarins enable two-color imaging (using several excitation sources and a single depletion laser) to be combined with subdiffractional optical resolution.