Enhanced Photothermal Effect of Plasmonic Nanoparticles Coated with Reduced Graphene Oxide

We report plasmonic gold nanoshells and nanorods coated with reduced graphene oxide that produce an enhanced photothermal effect when stimulated by near-infrared (NIR) light. Electrostatic interactions between nanosized graphene oxide and gold nanoparticles followed by in situ chemical reduction generated reduced graphene oxide-coated nanoparticles; the coating was demonstrated using Raman and HR-TEM. Reduced graphene oxide-coated gold nanoparticles showed enhanced photothermal effect compared to noncoated or nonreduced graphene oxide-coated gold nanoparticles. Reduced graphene oxide-coated gold nanoparticles killed cells more rapidly than did noncoated or nonreduced graphene oxide-coated gold nanoparticles.