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Issue 3, 2011
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Photoluminescence, cytotoxicity and in vitro imaging of hexagonal terbium phosphate nanoparticles doped with europium

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Abstract

Luminescent TbPO4 nanoparticles were synthesized via a citric-acid-mediated hydrothermal route. Eu3+ doping of TbPO4 enables an efficient Tb3+-to-Eu3+ energy transfer, leading to a four-fold increase of the absolute emission quantum yield (QY), compared to that of undoped TbPO4. To check the potential of biological use, we conducted in vitro biological experiments on human cervical carcinoma HeLa cells incubated with TbPO4:Eu nanoparticles. TbPO4:Eu nanoparticles can be successfully internalized into the cells, and they show bright intracellular luminescence and very low cytotoxicity. Photoluminescence intensity dependence upon time demonstrates that Eu3+-doped TbPO4 nanoparticles are highly resistant to photobleaching. Our present work represents a demonstration of the use of rare-earth-based nanocrystals as a biological labeling agent because they combine several advantages including high emission quantum yield, long luminescence lifetime, low cytotoxicity and high photostability.

Graphical abstract: Photoluminescence, cytotoxicity and in vitro imaging of hexagonal terbium phosphate nanoparticles doped with europium

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Publication details

The article was received on 14 Sep 2010, accepted on 09 Nov 2010 and first published on 07 Dec 2010


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C0NR00673D
Citation: Nanoscale, 2011,3, 1263-1269
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    Photoluminescence, cytotoxicity and in vitro imaging of hexagonal terbium phosphate nanoparticles doped with europium

    W. Di, J. Li, N. Shirahata, Y. Sakka, M. Willinger and N. Pinna, Nanoscale, 2011, 3, 1263
    DOI: 10.1039/C0NR00673D

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