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Issue 14, 2012
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Microwave-assisted rapid synthesis of luminescent gold nanoclusters for sensing Hg2+ in living cells using fluorescence imaging

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Abstract

A microwave-assisted strategy for synthesizing dihydrolipoic acid (DHLA) capped fluorescent gold nanoclusters (AuNCs) has been developed. Irradiation with microwaves during synthesis enhanced the fluorescence quantum yield (QY) of AuNCs by about five-fold and shortened the reaction time from hours to several minutes. The as-synthesized DHLA-AuNCs possessed bright near-infrared fluorescence (QY: 2.9%), ultrasmall hydrodynamic diameter (3.3 nm), good colloidal stability over the physiologically relevant pH range of 5–10 as well as low cytotoxicity toward HeLa cells. Moreover, these DHLA-AuNCs were capable of sensing Hg2+ through the specific interaction between Hg2+ and Au+ on the surface of AuNCs; the limit of detection (LOD) was 0.5 nM. A potential application in imaging intracellular Hg2+ in HeLa cells was demonstrated by using spinning disc confocal microscopy.

Graphical abstract: Microwave-assisted rapid synthesis of luminescent gold nanoclusters for sensing Hg2+ in living cells using fluorescence imaging

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Publication details

The article was received on 27 Jan 2012, accepted on 03 Mar 2012 and first published on 06 Mar 2012


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C2NR30219E
Citation: Nanoscale, 2012,4, 4155-4160
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    Microwave-assisted rapid synthesis of luminescent gold nanoclusters for sensing Hg2+ in living cells using fluorescence imaging

    L. Shang, L. Yang, F. Stockmar, R. Popescu, V. Trouillet, M. Bruns, D. Gerthsen and G. U. Nienhaus, Nanoscale, 2012, 4, 4155
    DOI: 10.1039/C2NR30219E

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