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Chem Rec. 2007;7(5):295-304.

Single-molecule measurements with a single quantum dot.

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Department of Applied Chemistry, Graduate School of Engineering, Nagoya University, Nagoya 464-8603, Japan.


Recent progress of quantum dot (QD) applications in single-molecule measurements are reviewed in this paper. Bright fluorescence and anti-photobleaching properties of QDs have explored the way to conduct long-time trajectory tracking of transmembrane proteins both in vitro and in vivo. Coupled with diversities of chemical and biochemical modifications of QD surfaces, their application fields are expanding to multidiscipline fields including imaging on the basis of a single molecule. Currently, molecular interactions and conformational changes on the QD surface can be detected at a single-molecule level. These expansions of application fields also involve toxicity problems in cells since most commercially available QDs consist of cadmium selenide or cadmium telluride, which are inherently toxic. For widespread applications of QDs including in vivo and therapeutic use in place of current organic fluorophore, cytotoxicity is discussed as well in this paper. 10.1002/tcr.20128.

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