A selective supramolecular photochemical sensor for dopamine

Dopamine (DA) is an important biomarker for diseases and biological disorders. Existing techniques for DA detection suffer from drawbacks including low sensitivity and selectivity as well as interfering signals from non-target molecules. A simple and selective photochemical sensor for the determination of DA in a supramolecular manner is presented. This approach utilises the complexation properties of a highly fluorescent water-soluble complex of perylene bis(diimide) dye with the macrocyclic host cucurbit[8]uril. The method can be used for the determination of DA in aqueous media, with detection limits below 2 × 10− 5 M, even in the presence of known interferents including ascorbic acid and the catecholamines epinephrine and norepinepherine.