Jump to main content
Jump to site search
PLANNED MAINTENANCE Close the message box

Scheduled maintenance work on Wednesday 27th March 2019 from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM (GMT).

During this time our website performance may be temporarily affected. We apologise for any inconvenience this might cause and thank you for your patience.

Issue 37, 2018
Previous Article Next Article

Plasmonic targeting of cancer cells in a three-dimensional natural hydrogel

Author affiliations


Using specifically designed gold nanoparticles and local laser irradiation, individual cells and small cell clusters could be targeted on a microscopic scale with minimal toxicity to nearby tissue. To date, most scientific studies and technological demonstrations of this approach were conducted on two-dimensional cultures, while most feasibility tests and preclinical trials were conducted using animal models. For bridging the gap between two-dimensional cell cultures and animal experiments, we propose and demonstrate the use of a natural hydrogel for studying the effect of intense, ultrashort laser pulses on a gold nanoparticle targeted tissue. Using illumination parameters comparable to those used with two-dimensional cultures, we show the complete eradication of multilayered cell colonies comprising normal fibroblasts and malignant epithelial cells co-cultured on a hydrogel scaffold. By evaluating the extent of cell damage for various pulse durations at off-resonance irradiation, we find that the observed damage mechanism was dominated by rapid thermal transitions around the gold nanospheres, rather than by photoionization. The work provides a new tool for understanding the complex pulse–particle–tissue interactions and demonstrates the important role of nanoparticle mediated cavitation bubbles in a thick, multilayered tissue.

Graphical abstract: Plasmonic targeting of cancer cells in a three-dimensional natural hydrogel

Back to tab navigation

Supplementary files

Publication details

The article was received on 25 Apr 2018, accepted on 24 Aug 2018 and first published on 25 Aug 2018

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8NR03391A
Citation: Nanoscale, 2018,10, 17807-17813

  •   Request permissions

    Plasmonic targeting of cancer cells in a three-dimensional natural hydrogel

    L. Minai, M. Hamra and D. Yelin, Nanoscale, 2018, 10, 17807
    DOI: 10.1039/C8NR03391A

Search articles by author