Dagys, Laurynas, Barbara Ripka, Markus Leutzsch, Gamal A. I. Moustafa, James Eills, Johannes F. P. Colell, and Malcolm H. Levitt. “Geminal Parahydrogen-Induced Polarization: Accumulating Long-Lived Singlet Order on Methylene Proton Pairs.” Magnetic Resonance 1, no. 2 (August 7, 2020): 175–86.
In the majority of hydrogenative parahydrogen-induced polarization (PHIP) experiments, the hydrogen molecule undergoes pairwise cis addition to an unsaturated precursor to occupy vicinal positions on the product molecule. However, some ruthenium-based hydrogenation catalysts induce geminal hydrogenation, leading to a reaction product in which the two hydrogen atoms are transferred to the same carbon centre, forming a methylene (CH2) group. The singlet order of parahydrogen is substantially retained over the geminal hydrogenation reaction, giving rise to a singlet-hyperpolarized CH2 group. Although the T1 relaxation times of the methylene protons are often short, the singlet order has a long lifetime, provided that singlet–triplet mixing is suppressed, either by chemical equivalence of the protons or by applying a resonant radiofrequency ﬁeld. The long lifetime of the singlet order enables the accumulation of hyperpolarization during the slow hydrogenation reaction. We introduce a kinetic model for the behaviour of the observed hyperpolarized signals, including both the chemical kinetics and the spin dynamics of the reacting molecules. Our work demonstrates the feasibility of producing singlet-hyperpolarized methylene moieties by parahydrogen-induced polarization. This potentially extends the range of molecular agents which may be generated in a hyperpolarized state by chemical reactions of parahydrogen.