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Facile conversion of coal tar to orange fluorescent carbon quantum dots and their composite encapsulated by liposomes for bioimaging

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Abstract

Carbon quantum dots (CQDs) are considered ideal fluorescent probes owing to their excellent optical properties and low cytotoxicity. We report a low-cost solvothermal method to synthesize orange fluorescent CQDs from coal tar. The as-fabricated CQDs exhibit bright and stable photoluminescence with long wavelength emission at 605 nm. To improve the biocompatibility of the oil-soluble CQDs, we chose liposomes as a carrier. After being encapsulated by liposomes, the CQDs become water-soluble and show a redshift of fluorescence to 640 nm. The in vitro and in vivo imaging application of the liposome-CQDs is demonstrated. Our work has provided a way for the conversion of low-value coal tar into high-value fluorescent carbon materials.

Graphical abstract: Facile conversion of coal tar to orange fluorescent carbon quantum dots and their composite encapsulated by liposomes for bioimaging

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Publication details

The article was received on 13 Aug 2017, accepted on 16 Oct 2017 and first published on 17 Oct 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NJ03005C
Citation: New J. Chem., 2017, Advance Article
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    Facile conversion of coal tar to orange fluorescent carbon quantum dots and their composite encapsulated by liposomes for bioimaging

    B. Geng, D. Yang, F. Zheng, C. Zhang, J. Zhan, Z. Li, D. Pan and L. Wang, New J. Chem., 2017, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7NJ03005C

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