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Enzymatic Polymerization-Activated Silver Nanoclusters Probe for in Situ Apoptosis Assay

Abstract

As an emerging category of fluorophores, nucleic acid-stabilized silver nanoclusters (DNA/AgNCs) have attracted a range of interests and have been widely applied for interdisciplinary research. In this work, we constructed a novel DNA/AgNCs probe for cell apoptosis detection and imaging based on enzyme-polymerized polyadenylic acid (poly-dA) DNA chain and toehold strand displacement reaction. This method can effectively “tag” intracellular genomic DNA fragments, a biochemical hallmark of apoptosis, with poly-dA DNA chains up to 400-base produced by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (TdT)-activated polymerization. The strand displacement initiated by the target poly-dA DNA chain releases the quencher labeled-DNA from DNA/AgNCs probe, leading to a significant fluorescence lighting-up of DNA/AgNCs for sensitive detection of cell apoptosis, with a high signal-to-background ratio (S/B = 58). Using the DNA/AgNCs-based assay, as low as 20 apoptotic cells can be detected in vitro. Furthermore, the feasibility of our approach was demonstrated by in situ quantitative analysis of apoptosis in HepG2 cells without the need of tedious washing and separation steps.

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Publication details

The article was received on 22 Mar 2018, accepted on 04 May 2018 and first published on 07 May 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8AN00535D
Citation: Analyst, 2018, Accepted Manuscript
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    Enzymatic Polymerization-Activated Silver Nanoclusters Probe for in Situ Apoptosis Assay

    R. Zhu, X. Luo, L. Deng, C. Lei, Y. Huang, Z. Nie and S. Yao, Analyst, 2018, Accepted Manuscript , DOI: 10.1039/C8AN00535D

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