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Int J Nanomedicine. 2006;1(1):51-7.

Surface functionalization of gold nanoparticles using hetero-bifunctional poly(ethylene glycol) spacer for intracellular tracking and delivery.

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  • 1Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Abstract

For the development of surface-functionalized gold nanoparticles as cellular probes and delivery agents, we have synthesized hetero-bifunctional poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG, MW 1500) having a thiol group on one terminus and a reactive functional group on the other for use as a flexible spacer. Coumarin, a model fluorescent dye, was conjugated to one end of the PEG spacer and gold nanoparticles were modified with coumarin-PEG-thiol. Surface attachment of coumarin through the PEG spacer decreased the fluorescence quenching effect of gold nanoparticles. The results of cellular cytotoxicity and fluorescence confocal analyses showed that the PEG spacer-modified nanoparticles were essentially non-toxic and could be efficiently internalized in the cells within 1 hour of incubation. Intracellular particle tracking using a Keck 3-D Fusion Microscope System showed that the functionalized gold nanoparticles were rapidly internalized in the cells and localized in the peri-nuclear region. Using the PEG spacer, the gold nano-platform can be conjugated with a variety of biologically relevant ligands such as fluorescent dyes, antibodies, etc in order to target, probe, and induce a stimulus at the target site.

PMID:
16467923
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1351208
Free PMC Article
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