Fluorescence turn on amine detection in a cationic covalent organic framework




Das, Gobinda
Garai, Bikash
Benyettou, Farah
Varghese, Sabu
Sharma, Sudhir Kumar
Gandara, Felipe
Pasricha, Renu
Baias, Maria
Jagannathan, Ramesh

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Ionic covalent organic frameworks (iCOFs) are new examples of porous materials and have shown great potential for various applications. When functionalized with suitable emission sites, guest uptake via the ionic moieties of iCOFs can cause a significant change in luminescence, making them excellent candidates for chemosensors. In here, we present a luminescence sensor in the form of an ionic covalent organic framework (TGH+•PD) composed of guanidinium and phenanthroline moieties for the detection of ammonia and primary aliphatic amines. TGH+•PD exhibits strong emission enhancement in the presence of selective primary amines due to the suppression of intramolecular charge transfer (ICT) with an ultra-low detection limit of 1.2 × 10‒7 M for ammonia. The presence of ionic moieties makes TGH+•PD highly dispersible in water, while deprotonation of the guanidinium moiety by amines restricts its ICT process and signals their presence by enhanced fluorescence emission. The presence of ordered pore walls introduces size selectivity among analyte molecules, and the iCOF has been successfully used to monitor meat products that release biogenic amine vapors upon decomposition due to improper storage.



organic framework, ionic covalent organic frameworks, icofs, porous materials


This work was supported by New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) and the NYUAD Water Research Center, funded by Tamkeen under the NYUAD Research Institute Award (project CG007). We thank NYUAD and the Core Technology Platforms for their generous support of the research program. NS acknowledge the funding sponsored by National Water and Energy Center, United Arab Emirates University (Grant #12R025).


Attribution 4.0 International


Das, G., Garai, B., Prakasam, T. et al. Fluorescence turn on amine detection in a cationic covalent organic framework. Nat Commun 13, 3904 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-022-31393-2