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Issue 1, 2019
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Optical nano-agents in the second near-infrared window for biomedical applications

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Abstract

The optical technology presents non-invasive, non-destructive, and non-ionizing features and has the ability to display various chemical components in tissues to provide useful information for various biomedical applications. Regarding selection of light wavelengths, second near-infrared (NIR-II, 900–1700 nm) light is a much better choice compared to both visible (380–780 nm) and traditional near-infrared (780–900 nm) light, because of its advantages including deeper penetration into biological tissues, less tissue scattering or absorption, and decreased interference by fluorescent proteins. Thus, using optical nano-agents that absorb or emit light in the NIR-II window can achieve deeper tissue optical imaging with higher signal-to-background ratios and better spatial resolution for diagnosis. What's more, some of these nano-agents can be further applied for imaging guided surgical removal, real-time monitoring of drug delivery, labeling lymphatic metastasis, biosensing, and imaging guided phototherapy. In this review, we attempt to summarize the recent advances of various NIR-II nano-agents (including single-walled carbon nanotubes, quantum dots, rare-earth doped nanoparticles, other inorganic nanomaterials, small organic molecule-based nanoparticles, and semiconducting polymer nanoparticles) in both bioimaging and therapeutic applications, and discuss the challenges and perspectives of these nano-agents for clinical practice in the near future.

Graphical abstract: Optical nano-agents in the second near-infrared window for biomedical applications

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Article information


Submitted
23 Aug 2018
First published
16 Nov 2018

Chem. Soc. Rev., 2019,48, 22-37
Article type
Tutorial Review

Optical nano-agents in the second near-infrared window for biomedical applications

Y. Cai, Z. Wei, C. Song, C. Tang, W. Han and X. Dong, Chem. Soc. Rev., 2019, 48, 22 DOI: 10.1039/C8CS00494C

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