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dc.contributor.authorHu, Yuxuanen_US
dc.contributor.authorYu, Jieen_US
dc.contributor.authorXu, Mengkeen_US
dc.contributor.authorPu, Kanyien_US
dc.identifier.citationHu, Y., Yu, J., Xu, M. & Pu, K. (2024). Bienzyme-locked activatable fluorescent probes for specific imaging of tumor-associated mast cells. Journal of the American Chemical Society, 146(18), 12656-12663.
dc.description.abstractTumor-associated mast cells (TAMCs) have been recently revealed to play a multifaceted role in the tumor microenvironment. Noninvasive optical imaging of TAMCs is thus highly desired to gain insights into their functions in cancer immunotherapy. However, due to the lack of a single enzyme that is specific to mast cells, a common probe design approach based on single-enzyme activation is not applicable. Herein, we reported a bienzyme-locked molecular probe (THCMC) based on a photoinduced electron transfer-intramolecular charge-transfer hybrid strategy for in vivo imaging of TAMCs. The bienzyme-locked activation mechanism ensures that THCMC exclusively turns on near-infrared (NIR) fluorescence only in the presence of both tryptase and chymase specifically coexpressed by mast cells. Thus, THCMC effectively distinguishes mast cells from other leukocytes, including T cells, neutrophils, and macrophages, a capability lacking in single-locked probes. Such a high specificity of THCMC allows noninvasive tracking of the fluctuation of TAMCs in the tumor of living mice during cancer immunotherapy. The results reveal that the decreased intratumoral signal of THCMC after combination immunotherapy correlates well with the reduced population of TAMCs, accurately predicting the inhibition of tumor growth. Thus, this study not only presents the first NIR fluorescent probe specific for TAMCs but also proposes a generic bienzyme-locked probe design approach for in vivo cell imaging.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipMinistry of Education (MOE)en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipNational Research Foundation (NRF)en_US
dc.relation.ispartofJournal of the American Chemical Societyen_US
dc.rights© 2024 American Chemical Society. All rights reserved. This article may be downloaded for personal use only. Any other use requires prior permission of the copyright holder. The Version of Record is available online at:
dc.titleBienzyme-locked activatable fluorescent probes for specific imaging of tumor-associated mast cellsen_US
dc.typeJournal Articleen
dc.contributor.schoolSchool of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnologyen_US
dc.description.versionSubmitted/Accepted versionen_US
dc.subject.keywordsCell lineen_US
dc.description.acknowledgementK.P. thanks the Singapore National Research Foundation (NRF) (NRF-NRFI07-2021-0005) and the Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Fund Tier 2 (MOE-T2EP30220-0010 and MOE-T2EP30221-0004) for financial support. Animal experiments were performed in compliance with the Guidelines for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals of the Nanyang Technological University\u2500Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (NTU-IACUC) and approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) for Animal Experiments, Singapore.en_US
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