Seungmo Suh

Degree Type

Honors Capstone Project

Date of Submission

Spring 5-1-2012

Capstone Advisor

Professor Karin Ruhlandt

Honors Reader

Professor Jon Zubieta

Capstone Major


Capstone College

Arts and Science

Audio/Visual Component


Capstone Prize Winner


Won Capstone Funding


Honors Categories

Sciences and Engineering

Subject Categories

Biochemistry | Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Structural Biology


The purpose of this project is to study synthetic methodologies leading to the designing of various calcium and magnesium based diphosphonates with possible applications as bone scaffolding materials. In tissue engineering scaffolds are frequently employed to enhance the growth of new cells, providing the motivation to study alkaline earth metal based diphosphonates as a possible source for scaffold for bone growth.

While the transition metal phosphonates based frameworks are well studied, alkaline earth metal based phosphonates and diphosphonates remain at its infancy. The challenge to the chemistry of the alkaline earth metal phosphonates and diphosphonates based frameworks includes poor solubility of compounds and limited understanding on how to control the metal’s coordination environment. The main difference between alkaline earth and transition metals lies in the nature of the metal-ligand bond, as well as the size of the metal center. Whereas metal-ligand bonding in the transition metals is dictated by the metal’s d-orbital that not only provide a robust bond, but also maintain geometrical control; the alkaline earth metal-ligand bond is predominantly electrostatic, as such, many parameters dictate the metal environment. Often, multiple configurations that are very similar in energy are possible.

The main focus of this project was to synthesize desired diphosphonate ligand and to design and establish suitable conditions to grow high quality crystals to be analysed with single X-ray diffraction. Among number of available methods such as hydrothermal, solvothermal and gel crystallisation, this project mainly employed hydrothermal method to produce designed crystals.

A further aspect of this project was to synthesize 3-oxapentane-1,5-biphosponic acid and to produce magnesium and calcium based frameworks. This study provides a sequential step to synthesise the ligand.

Suh_Title page.docx (15 kB)
Title Page

Suh_Table of Contents.docx (19 kB)

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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