Mónica Mendes, Ms.

RABBIT PhD student (PD/BD/106038/2015)

“Probing Radiosensitizers in Electron Transfer Experiments" (2015-2019)

Electron-transfer processes are predominant in several mechanisms and play relevant roles in a variety of environments in particular within the biological medium. It is now well-established that low-energy electrons are closely related to the molecular mechanisms that affect biological systems, in particular DNA/RNA. Nowadays, radiosensitizers such as nitroimidazoles have been thoroughly used in clinical trials against cancer. Therefore, cross-sectional results for these interactions are highly relevant to the use of radiation in medicine and the development of new radiotherapy protocols. However the molecular description regarding electron-transfer processes and the efficiency of such radiation induced treatments is still unknown. This work intends to study the molecular mechanisms of the initial step in the radiation-induced damage making use of crossed molecular beam techniques to investigate electron-transfer processes to these targets in gas-phase collisions with fast potassium atoms and anionic species. Total partial cross sections will be obtained for low energies. Ultimately, studies in condensed-phase will also be performed.