Campus Access Only

All rights reserved. This publication is intended for use solely by faculty, students, and staff of University of the Pacific. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, now known or later developed, including but not limited to photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the author or the publisher.

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


Graduate School

First Advisor

Michael J. Minch

First Committee Member

Charles A. Matuszak

Second Committee Member

Patrick R. Jones


This study provides information about the kinetics of the hydrolytic ring cleavage of imidazolium compounds and the catalytic effect of micelles in this ring cleavage. 9-Methylcaffeine iodide was synthesized and its base catalyzed ring cleavage was studied. The ring cleavage, via alkaline hydrolysis of the imidazole moiety, showed pseudo-first order kinetics over the pH range of 7.28 to 10.81. Activation parameters were found to be: Ea = 29.4 Kcal mole-1, △H+ = 28.8 Kcal mole-1 , and △S+ = 27.4 cal mole-l deg -1 The kinetics were studied in the presence of micelles and no rate enhancement was observed. The mechanism for ring cleavage was also investigated. 9-Ethylcaffeine iodide was synthesized and its base catalyzed ring cleavage, at 30°C and a pH of 9.42, showed pseudo first order kinetics. 6 -3 -1 The kobs was found to be 1. 5 x 10-3 sec-1. The oxidation kinetics of 8 ,8-dihydro-9-methylcaffeine to 9-methylcaffeinE:· iodide were also examined.