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Journal of Sensors
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 1905454, 8 pages
Research Article

Water Soluble Cationic Porphyrin Sensor for Detection of Hg2+, Pb2+, Cd2+, and Cu2+

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches, TX 75962, USA

Received 8 March 2016; Accepted 17 April 2016

Academic Editor: Sher Bahadar Khan

Copyright © 2016 Matibur Zamadar et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Here we report the sensing properties of the aqueous solution of meso-tetra(N-methyl-4-pyridyl)porphine tetrachloride (1) for simultaneous detection of toxic metal ions by using UV-vis spectroscopy. Cationic porphyrin 1 displayed different electronic absorptions in UV-vis region upon interacting with Hg2+, Pb2+, Cd2+, and Cu2+ ions in neutral water solution at room temperature. Quite interestingly, the porphyrin 1 showed that it can function as a single optical chemical sensor and/or metal ion receptor capable of detecting two or more toxic metal ions, particularly Hg2+, Pb2+, and Cd2+ ions coexisting in a water sample. Porphyrin 1 in an aqueous solution provides a unique UV-vis sensing system for the determination of Cd2+ in the presence of larger metal ions such as Hg2+, or Pb2+. Finally, the examination of the sensing properties of 1 demonstrated that it can operate as a Cu2+ ion selective sensor via metal displacement from the 1-Hg2+, 1-Pb2+, and 1-Cd2+.