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[en] Highlights: • We examined the attainment of the Conical Intersection (CI) in Hipoxantine (Hx). • Charge transfer in the molecule is very important in the evolution of S0 and S1. • Aromaticity impairment and push pull systems in Hx are crucial in attaining its CI. • QTAIM offers valuable tools to study the photostability of nucleobases. We analyzed the evolution of the electron density across the S0 and S1 states potential energy curves of hypoxanthine (Hx) using the Quantum Theory of Atoms in Molecules (QTAIM). Examination of QTAIM energies and electronic populations indicates that charge transfer processes are important in the stabilization of the S1 state towards the Conical Intersection (CI) which confers to Hx its photostability. Our results point that the rise of energy of the S0 state approaching the CI is accompanied by a loss of aromaticity of hypoxanthine. Overall, the analyses presented herein give important insights on the photostability of nucleobases.
[en] With the objective of understanding the interaction between carboxylic substituents and aromatic systems in electronically excited states, we have studied the photophysics of anthracene-9-carboxylic acid and its conjugate base through spectroscopic and computational approaches. We measured the emission spectrum evolution with femtosecond resolution observing that the formation of the relaxed fluorescent state of the acid corresponds to a red shifting of the emission which takes place within the first picosecond after excitation, a time-scale defined by the solvent response (acetone). For the case of the anthracene-9-carboxylate system, the spectral evolution is practically absent, indicating a lack of relaxation of the substituent orientation in the S1 state. Computational work at the time-dependent density functional theory level, considering the novel state-specific formalism, indicates that for anthracene-9-carboxylic acid, the first electronically excited state evolves from a structure with a nearly 60° dihedral angle between the carboxylic and aromatic systems, to a relaxed structure with a nearly 30° angle. On the other hand, the calculations show that for the salt, the carboxylate group remains decoupled from the aromatic system both in the ground and fluorescent state, remaining in both states at nearly 90°. Our results elucidate that the emission spectra of the acid and conjugate base are defined by the degree of interaction between the carboxylic (or carboxylate) group and the aromatic system. Such interactions are drastically different from the formal charge present in the carboxylate ion. -- Highlights: • Understanding of the interaction between carboxylic substituents and aromatic systems in electronically excited states. • Elucidation of the excited state dynamics of 9-ACA and its conjugated base in acetone solutions. • The spectral evolution time-scale of the aromatic acid and its salt depends on the solvation dynamics. • The relaxation mechanism of the first excited state of the aromatic acid involved the rotation of the carboxylic group towards a more co-planar geometry. • The new state specific methodology provided excellent results with small discrepancies of a few percent with respect the experimental values