Kinetic studies of the photochemical decomposition of alkannin/shikonin enantiomers

Fu An Chen, Hui Wen Cheng, An-Bang Wu, Hsing Chu Hsu, Chau Yang Chen

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18 Citations (Scopus)


The photodegradation of alkannin/shikonin (A/S) was studied as a function of solvent polarity, pH and ionic strength. This process follows an apparent first-order kinetic reaction. The photodegradation rate is inversely proportional to the solvent polarity in the order of chloroform > dichloromethane > 2-propanol > ethanol > methanol. The rate-pH profile reveals that A/S is more stable in an acidic condition: marginally subject to specific acid or base catalysis and is affected by two ionizable groups on the molecule. Ionic strength does not affect the photochemical decomposition rate at pH 5, 9 or 12.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-251
Number of pages3
JournalChemical and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1996


  • alkannin/shikonin enantiomer
  • photochemical decomposition
  • photodegradation
  • shikon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology


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