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J Histochem Cytochem. 1978 Apr;26(4):277-83.

Fluorescence properties of free and protein bound fluorescein dyes. I. Macrospectrofluorometric measurements.


Excitation and emission properties of fluorescein derivatives were studied macrofluorometrically. Measurements were performed with solutions of various concentrations (0.07-100 microgram/ml) of free sodium fluorescein prepared from fluorescein diacetate (FDA), fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC) and FITC bound to rabbit gamma-globulin. Both excitation and emission spectra as well as fluorescence intensities at constant excitation/emission wavelengths (496/515 nm) were recorded. The findings indicate that (1) FDA gives about twice the fluorescence intensity compared to equal concentrations of FITC. (2) The fluorescence properties of FITC upon excitation with blue light (lambda = 496 nm) are only slightly altered by the conjugation to rabbit gamma-globulin. (3) Considerable quenching due to conjugation could, however, be shown to occur upon UV excitation (lambda = 340 nm). (4) Fluorescence emission excited by visible blue light (496 nm) increases linearly to dye concentration in a range of 0.07-2.5 microgram/ml. Beginning at 5 microgram/ml (10-(5) M/1) all three compounds show a sharp decrease of fluorescence intensity with further increasing concentration. Practical aspects of these data for the immunofluorescence method are discussed.

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