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Nano Lett. 2007 Sep;7(9):2613-7. Epub 2007 Aug 11.

Synthesis and characterization of polymer-coated quantum dots with integrated acceptor dyes as FRET-based nanoprobes.

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Center for Nanoscience, Ludwig-Maximilans Universität Munich, Amalienstrasse 54, Munich, D-80799 München, Germany.


A fluorescence resonance energy transfer pair consisting of a colloidal quantum dot donor and multiple organic fluorophores as acceptors is reported and the photophysics of the system is characterized. Most nanoparticle-based biosensors reported so far use the detection of specific changes of the donor/acceptor distance under the influence of analyte binding. Our nanoparticle design on the other hand leads to sensors that detect spectral changes of the acceptor (under the influence of analyte binding) at fixed donor/acceptor distance by the introduction of the acceptor into the polymer coating. This approach allows for short acceptor-donor separation and thus for high-energy transfer efficiencies. Advantageously, the binding properties of the hydrophilic polymer coating further allows for addition of poly(ethylene glycol) shells for improved colloidal stability.

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