The nitroxyl radical of 2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidine 1-oxyl (TEMPO) can electro-oxidize not only alcohols but also amines. However, TEMPO has low activity in a neutral aqueous solution due to the large steric hindrance around the nitroxyl radical, which is the active site. Therefore, nortropine N-oxyl (NNO) was synthesized to improve the catalytic ability of TEMPO and to investigate the electrolytic oxidation effect on amines from anodic current changes. Ethylamine, diethylamine, triethylamine, tetraethylamine, isopropylamine, and tert-butylamine were investigated. The results indicated that TEMPO produced no response current for any of the amines under physiological conditions; however, NNO did function as an electrolytic oxidation catalyst for diethylamine, triethylamine, and isopropylamine. The anodic current depended on amine concentration, which suggests that NNO can be used as an electrochemical sensor for amine compounds. In addition, electrochemical detection of lidocaine, a local anesthetic containing a tertiary amine structure, was demonstrated using NNO with a calibration curve of 0.1–10 mM.
- Electrocatalytic oxidation
- Nitroxyl radical