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Issue 15, 2018
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Construction of a hypoxia responsive upconversion nanosensor for tumor imaging by fluorescence resonance energy transfer from carbon dots to ruthenium complex

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Abstract

In this work, we synthesized a hypoxia responsive upconversion nanosensor by the conjugation of oxygen insensitive upconversion carbon dots (CDs) with an oxygen sensitive ruthenium(II) complex (Rud2b). The CD–Rud2b conjugate was then PEGylated to mediate the formation of nano-sized assemblies of the resultant polymer probe (CD–Ru–mPEG) in aqueous solution. The strategy allows the oxygen sensitive probe (Rud2b) to be excited by NIR irradiation and achieve upconverted emission through the Förster resonance energy transfer process from the CDs. The oxygen sensitivity of the ruthenium moiety was well-preserved in the polymeric aggregates because the PEG chains could prohibit the occurrence of self-quenching that may occur due to the close packing of the probes. Such an upconversion photoluminescence property makes the CD–Ru–mPEG nanosensor work as a biocompatible imaging system to monitor the oxygen level in cells and the hypoxic condition in vivo.

Graphical abstract: Construction of a hypoxia responsive upconversion nanosensor for tumor imaging by fluorescence resonance energy transfer from carbon dots to ruthenium complex

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Publication details

The article was received on 30 Jan 2018, accepted on 07 Mar 2018 and first published on 09 Mar 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TB00278A
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. B, 2018,6, 2315-2322
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    Construction of a hypoxia responsive upconversion nanosensor for tumor imaging by fluorescence resonance energy transfer from carbon dots to ruthenium complex

    D. Yang, S. Guan, Y. Niu, Z. Xie, S. Zhou and X. Qu, J. Mater. Chem. B, 2018, 6, 2315
    DOI: 10.1039/C8TB00278A

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