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Trends Cell Biol. 2004 Sep;14(9):497-504.

Potentials and pitfalls of fluorescent quantum dots for biological imaging.

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The Rockefeller University, Box 304, 1230 York Avenue, New York, NY 1002, USA.


Fluorescent semiconductor nanocrystals, known as quantum dots (QDs), have several unique optical and chemical features. These features make them desirable fluorescent tags for cell and developmental biological applications that require long-term, multi-target and highly sensitive imaging. The improved synthesis of water-stable QDs, the development of approaches to label cells efficiently with QDs, and improvements in conjugating QDs to specific biomolecules have triggered the recent explosion in their use in biological imaging. Although there have been many successes in using QDs for biological applications, limitations remain that must be overcome before these powerful tools can be used routinely by biologists.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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