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ACS Nano. 2008 May;2(5):873-8. doi: 10.1021/nn700319z.

Biocompatible luminescent silicon quantum dots for imaging of cancer cells.

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1
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, University at Buffalo (SUNY), Buffalo, New York 14260-4200, USA.

Abstract

Luminescent silicon quantum dots (Si QDs) have great potential for use in biological imaging and diagnostic applications. To exploit this potential, they must remain luminescent and stably dispersed in water and biological fluids over a wide range of pH and salt concentration. There have been many challenges in creating such stable water-dispersible Si QDs, including instability of photoluminescence due their fast oxidation in aqueous environments and the difficulty of attaching hydrophilic molecules to Si QD surfaces. In this paper, we report the preparation of highly stable aqueous suspensions of Si QDs using phospholipid micelles, in which the optical properties of Si nanocrystals are retained. These luminescent micelle-encapsulated Si QDs were used as luminescent labels for pancreatic cancer cells. This paves the way for silicon quantum dots to be a valuable optical probe in biomedical diagnostics.

PMID:
19206483
PMCID:
PMC2676166
DOI:
10.1021/nn700319z
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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