Photo-catalysis research groupHomeScienceBusinessMediaProjectsTeamPublicationsGalleryNewsOpeningsContact

Selective (sono)photocatalytic cleavage of lignin-inspired β – O – 4 linkages to phenolics by ultrasound derived 1-D titania nanomaterials



Catalytic conversion of lignin to value-added aromatic compounds is still an open challenge, since the selective cleavage of the linkages interconnecting the aromatic molecules, especially the β-O-4 ones, is not efficiently achieved yet.

Herein, novel titania-based nanostructured materials were synthesized using low-power-low-frequency ultrasound that demonstrated high efficiency for the selective cleavage of Cα-Cβ bond of β-O-4 linkages of lignin-inspired model compounds. Going a step ahead, experiments of sonophotocatalytic valorization of 2-phenoxy-1-phenylethanol were contacted for the first time, where the exposure to ultrasound leading to better conversion and selectivity towards the desired products in the case of the novel ultrasound-synthesized nano-photocatalyst.

Mechanistic insights showcased that photogenerated holes are the main active species in the catalytic process. In general, this research work provides a green, effective, and cost-effective approach for the selective and efficient catalytic lignin valorization.


The authors would like to acknowledge the support from the National Science Centre in Poland within OPUS-13 project nr 2017/25/B/ST8/01592. This work has also received partial funding from the CELISE – Sustainable production of Cellulose-based products and additives to be used in SMEs and rural areas project within the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program, Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions – RISE, with the grant agreement No. 101007733 and from the Uni-versidad Cooperativa de Colombia with project number: INV3122.

This research was supported also by the initiative for the promotion of science diplomacy called​“Towards a sustainable and inclusive Colombia: Closing knowledge gaps and needs towards Science Diplomacy with the Kingdom of Belgium and the Mission to the European Union” funded by the Call No. 928 of 2022 of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MinCiencias), identified with code No 9259, and the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia with project number: INV3494. The authors would like to thank Ms. Agnieszka Wisniewska for thermal analysis, Dr. Dmytro Lisovytskiy for obtaining the XRF and XRD patterns and Dr. Pawel for FTIR measuements. More information about this project can be found at:


Selective (sono)photocatalytic cleavage of lignin-inspired β–O–4 linkages to phenolics by ultrasound derived 1-D titania nanomaterials

by Abdul Qayyum, Dimitrios A. Giannakoudakis, Dariusz Łomot, Ramón Fernando Colmenares-Quintero, Kostiantyn Nikiforow, Alec P. LaGrow, Juan Carlos Colmenares. Ultrasonics Sonochemistry, Volume 104, March 2024, 106829

DOI: 10.1016/j.ultsonch.2024.106829

First published: March 2024

Article link (OPEN ACCESS!):


Consider following us on social media   Link to Instagram      Link to LinkedIn      

Sign-up for our science Newsletter

website ©