Synthesis of Core-shell Lanthanide-doped Upconversion Nanocrystals for Cellular Applications
Date of Issue2017
School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
Lanthanide-doped upconversion nanocrystals (UCNs) have attracted much attention in recent years based on their promising and controllable optical properties, which allow for the absorption of near-infrared (NIR) light and can subsequently convert it into multiplexed emissions that span over a broad range of regions from the UV to the visible to the NIR. This article presents detailed experimental procedures for high-temperature co-precipitation synthesis of core-shell UCNs that incorporate different lanthanide ions into nanocrystals for efficiently converting deep-tissue penetrable NIR excitation (808 nm) into a strong blue emission at 480 nm. By controlling the surface modification with biocompatible polymer (polyacrylic acid, PAA), the as-prepared UCNs acquires great solubility in buffer solutions. The hydrophilic nanocrystals are further functionalized with specific ligands (dibenzyl cyclooctyne, DBCO) for localization on the cell membrane. Upon NIR light (808 nm) irradiation, the upconverted blue emission can effectively activate the light-gated channel protein on the cell membrane and specifically regulate the cation (e.g., Ca2+) influx in the cytoplasm. This protocol provides a feasible methodology for the synthesis of core-shell lanthanide-doped UCNs and subsequent biocompatible surface modification for further cellular applications.
Journal of Visualized Experiments
© 2017 The Author(s) (Journal of Visualized Experiments). This paper was published in Journal of Visualized Experiments and is made available as an electronic reprint (preprint) with permission of The Author(s) (Journal of Visualized Experiments). The published version is available at: [http://dx.doi.org/10.3791/56416]. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic or multiple reproduction, distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper is prohibited and is subject to penalties under law.