A research team in Asia has developed a method for tracking, or etracingf, cells that overcomes the limitations of existing methods. The teamfs fluorescent organic tracers will provide researchers with a non-invasive tool to continually track biological processes for long periods. Applications for the tracers include following carcinogenesis or the progress of interventions such as stem cell therapies.
Bin Liu and Ben Zhong Tang of the A*STAR Institute of Materials Research and Engineering in Singapore and their co-workers developed probes composed of a small number of molecules that aggregate. The aggregation means that the probes have more detectable fluorescence and less leakage than that provided by single-molecule probes. Importantly, rather than eblinkf, the teamfs tracers show steady fluorescence, and do not contain heavy metal ions that can be toxic for living systems.
Compared with their existing inorganic counterparts, the teamfs carbon-based tracers show greater chemical stability and improved biocompatibility with cell biochemistry. They are also more resistant to bleaching by light and do not interfere with normal biochemical processes. Furthermore, the fluorescent signals emitted by the probes do not overlap with the signal naturally emitted by cells.
The tracers developed by Liu, Tang and their colleagues are examples of fquantum dotsf, as they are composed of a small number of molecules with optical characteristics that rely on quantum-mechanical effects. Technically, they are referred to as aggregation-induced emission dots (AIE dots) as they become photostable and highly efficient fluorescent emitters when their component molecules aggregate.
The assembly of the AIE dots began with the synthesis of organic molecules, specifically 2,3-bis(4-(phenyl(4-(1,2,2-triphenylvinyl)phenyl)amino)phenyl)fumaronitrile (TPETPAFN), which the researchers then encapsulated in an insoluble lipid-based matrix. Next, the researchers attached small peptide molecules derived from the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) to exploit the ability of these peptides to promote efficient uptake of AIE dots into living cells.
gOur AIE dots could track isolated human breast cancer cells in vitro for 10 to 12 generations and glioma tumor cells in vivo in mice for 21 days,h says Liu. gThey outperform existing commercial inorganic quantum dots, and open a new avenue in the development of advanced fluorescent probes for following biological processes such as carcinogenesis, stem cell transplantation and other cell-based therapies.h
Future work by Liu, Tang and co-workers will aim to broaden the application of the organic tracers for their use in conjunction with magnetic resonance and nuclear imaging techniques.The A*STAR]affiliated researchers contributing to this research are from the Institute of Materials Research and Engineering
A novel socio-ecological approach helps identifying suitable wolf habitats
17.02.2017 | Universität Zürich
New, ultra-flexible probes form reliable, scar-free integration with the brain
16.02.2017 | University of Texas at Austin
Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...
The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.
The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...
Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...
Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".
Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...
13.02.2017 | Event News
10.02.2017 | Event News
09.02.2017 | Event News
17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering
17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering
17.02.2017 | Health and Medicine