Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School


Committee Member

Timothy Brewer, Ph.D.


The ruthenium complexes have gained importance in cancer research in recent times, as several cancers have developed resistance towards platinum compounds. Platinum compounds have severe adverse effects that limited their use towards a wide range of tumors.

Ruthenium complexes are considered as pro-drugs, as they transform into antitumor active species in the body by hydrolysis, redox reactions, and reactions with biologically occurring nucleophiles. My project involved the synthesis of two ruthenium complexes with different ligands and the study of the hydrolysis reactions under different pH at room temperature using UV-visible spectrophotometry.

These studies will enable us to understand how structural factors and reaction conditions affect the kinetics, which may lead us to a better understanding of the stability and anticancer properties of these complexes. The data can also be used to conduct pharmacokinetic studies and in drug design.

My project presents the affect of different ligands and pH on the rate of hydrolysis of the ruthenium complexes. Imidazole and Indazole are the two ligands used for this study. We found that the hydrolysis reaction of the Ruthenium-Imidazole (RIM) complex is a two-step process that involved the formation of an intermediate. The rate constants for the two steps in the reaction were determined and found to follow first order kinetics. The rate hydrolysis of the RIM complex in water at room temperature was found to be greater at pH 8.4 for the first complex. The hydrolysis of the RIM complex was found to be independent of basic pH.

Included in

Chemistry Commons