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Brief Profile of the Awardee


Dr Pradyut Ghosh

  • 2015
  • Chemical Sciences
  • 17/02/1970
  • Inorganic and Supramolecular Chemistry
Award Citation:

Dr Ghosh has made outstanding contributions in designing molecular assemblies for anion recognition, which have applications in the area of sensors.

Academic Qualifications:
Thesis and Guide details:
Details of CSIR Fellowship/ Associateship held, if any or from other sources/ agencies.
Significant foreign assignments:
(a) Significant contributions to science and/ or technology development by the nominee based on the work done in India during most part of last 5 years:
Professor Pradyut Ghosh‟s research in the area of Anion Recognition Chemistry is internationally well recognized. He has rationally designed and synthesized different receptors in appropriate platforms having suitable binding sites to achieve selective recognition of hydrated anions and anions of different shape and size as revealed from solid-state structural studies as well as thermodynamic, kinetic and conformational studies in solution. These receptors form distinct clefts or cavities to address the selectivity issue, which are otherwise energetically unfavourable. In this direction, he has made an intriguing finding of very efficient recognition of hydrated fluoride in capsular assemblies constructed by benzene platform based tripodal and hexapodal amide receptors (Chem. Commun. 2009, 5389; Inorg. Chem. 2010, 49, 943; Chem. Commun. 2011, 47, 6269). These works have revealed new and important insights into a difficult problem of fluoride removal from drinking water (chosen as „Hot article‟ in the journal “Chemical Communications). On the other hand, his recent work has shown selective trapping of toxic arsenate (HAsO4 2−) in aqueous medium in the cavity of a dimeric capsular assembly of a TREN-based tripodal urea (Dalton Trans. 2013, 42, 11371). His work also shows the first evidence of dihydrogen phosphate encapsulation in the C3v symmetric cavity of a tripodal urea with a significantly high binding constant (Chem. Commun. 2007, 5214). Most importantly, this receptor exhibits a very effective fixation of environmental carbon dioxide in the form of carbonate in an air stable capsular assembly and regeneration of the free receptor from the dimeric assembly under mild conditions (Chem. Commun. 2010, 46, 1082). Further, this carbonate capsule and similar tripodal urea receptors have been demonstrated as excellent extractants for sulfate, chromate, fluoride etc. from water (Chem. Sci. 2012, 3, 1522; Eur. J. Inorg. Chem. 2012, 5791; Eur. J. Inorg. Chem. 2014, 4134). In recent time research on sulfate separation has got tremendous impetus because this ion is a prominent troublesome species in the nuclear waste and can interfere in their treatment processes. He has developed a dual-host approach for liquid–liquid extraction of potassium fluoride/chloride by a tripodal amide in combination with well-known potassium binding crown ether even in the presence of nitrate (Chem. Commun. 2011, 47, 4721). The selective extraction of alkali metal salts is of interest due to its applications in separation technology, production of common living materials, medicine etc. In a proof-of-concept experiment, the nominee has demonstrated the formation of a nitrate- assisted dimeric capsular aggregate of a synthetic receptor and rupturing of the capsular assembly by doping chloride in water. Controlling the assembly and disassembly processes by such external stimuli or chemical means has an impact in developing delivery systems (Chem. Commun. 2009, 3184). He has fundamentally shown that a simple tripodal amine receptor can generate a C3v-symmetric cavity for halide encapsulation in its tri-protonated state in spite of the fact that a quasi-planar C2V-like symmetry is expected for such systems (Inorg. Chem. 2007, 46, 4769; Inorg. Chem. 2011, 50, 10629). His study on higher generation hexapodal hosts reports the first example of encapsulation of as many as four nitrates by the neutral receptor (Org. Lett. 2010, 12, 328).
(b) Impact of the contributions in the field concerned:
This research involves some of the fundamental problems associated with anion recognition chemistry such as development of selective receptors for various anions, recognition of anions in aqueous medium, extraction of anions and salts from water, fixation of aerial carbondioxide, anion assisted capsular assembly and disassembly processes. Thus this research aims some of the genuine problems related to health and environment. The presence of fluoride, nitrate, arsenate etc. in water is one of the major concerns because of their implication on human health. Dental and skeletal fluorosis has been reported in various countries around the world associated with high level of fluoride in drinking water. Recently, fluoride has been accused of causing osteosarcoma, and many other health hazards. It is estimated that more than 100 million people are drinking water which contains fluoride in concentration over the limit suggested by the World Health Organization guidelines. Another most common contaminant identified in ground water is the dissolved nitrogen in the form of nitrate. High concentration of nitrate in drinking water has been found to cause methaemoglobinaemia in infants, a fatal disease characterized by cyanosis in which blood pigment losses oxygen required by all human tissues. Human cancer has been related to nitrate through the formation of N-nitrosamines and nitrosamides which are extremely powerful carcinogenic agents. Thus the problem of high nitrate concentration in ground water is receiving increasing attention. Similarly, presence of highly toxic arsenate in ground water is a serious warning to more than ~ 43 million people worldwide. On the other hand, sulfate removal from the nuclear wastes is regarded as one of the major problems to retrieve or convert nuclear waste that are stored in underground tanks worldwide. Thus, the fundamental chemistry of selective recognition and extraction of fluoride, nitrate, arsenate and sulfate in aqueous medium are considered to be very important to develop technologies in water purification process and nuclear waste reprocessing. Similarly, selective extraction of various alkali metal salts from natural resource is of great importance to the chemical industries for the production of ultra pure commodity materials. Thus, developments of systems that can allow such separations are potential to develop chemical technology. Carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere is constantly increasing due to industry, transport, etc. that contributes to global climate change. The work on the efficient fixation of aerial carbon dioxide as carbonate in the dimeric capsular assembly demonstrates great potential of such capsular assemblies in atmospheric CO2 fixation and development of system that can covert aerial carbon dioxide to other value added products. On the other hand, the non-covalent synthesis of supramolecular structures with an internal cavity to accommodate guest molecules has attracted much attention because these aggregates are important in molecular recognition, selective guest-inclusion and the catalysis of specific reactions. Further, the synthesis of such artificial architectures with internal voids to mimic viruses is one of the current concepts for drug delivery applications.
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The Awardee a fellow of the Indian National Science Academy/Indian Academy of Sciences/National Academy of Sciences/Others:
The Awardee delivered invited lecture(s) in India/abroad and/or chaired any scientific Internatiional Conference Symposium:
List of Awardee's 10 most significant publications.
List of Awardee's 5 most significant publications during the last 5 years
List of Awardee's 5 most significant publications from out of work done in India during the last five years:
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Contact Details

  • Department of Inorganic Chemistry
    Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science
    2A & 2B Raja S C Mullick Road Jadavpur
    Kolkata - 700032
  • 033-24734971
  • 033-24732805
  • icpg[at]iacs[dot]res[dot]in
19 Nov 2018, http://ssbprize.gov.in/Content/Detail.aspx?AID=508