This work presents a novel cascade of chemical functionalization of multiwalled carbon nanotubes which allows the conjugation with differently substituted coumarins. Aim of the present work is to synthesize new materials able to rescue cells from the adverse effect of CNT particles since pristine CNTs are practically insoluble and tend to accumulate inside cells, organs and tissues. Moreover, it was reported that single walled CNTs particles show an adverse effect on keratinocytes through an oxidative mechanism, leading to NF-kB activation. The conjugation with coumarins, known superoxide anion scavengers, could switch the cytotoxicity of the new materials. The cascade functionalization of MWCNTs by sequential steps of carboxylation, acylation, amine modification and finally, coumarin conjugation have been performed and the synthesis and the chemical properties of several f-MWCNTs-coumarins have been exploited.
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