Fast and Sensitive Detection of Inorganic Azide

Sodium azide is a colorless, tasteless, odorless and salt-like solid that has been widely used in agricultural, laboratory, and medical applications. However, in addition to environmental concerns regarding this substance, it has also recently attracted attention for safety issues. Despite the clear public health concerns related to sodium azide, there is no quick detection method available for environmental, medical, and forensic applications. Meanwhile, in the field of click chemistry, Huisgen 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition has been commonly used for the synthesis of intermediates in medicinal chemistry because of the reaction’s simple operation, fast reaction rate and biocompatibility. However, a trace amount of sodium azide would affect the bioactivity and cytotoxicity of synthesized drug candidates. As a result, there is a real need for the development of a simple, rapid and accurate azide detection method. The groups of Professor Binghe Wang at Georgia State University (USA) and Professor Geert-Jan Boons at the University of Georgia (USA) have therefore been investigating a method of detecting inorganic azide, resulting in this paper.

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