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Bichromatic Imaging with Hemicyanine Fluorophores Enables Simultaneous Visualization of Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and Metastatic Intestinal Cancer

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posted on 2022-09-20, 07:08 authored by Weijia Xu, Senyao Liu, Zhaoming Chen, Fapu Wu, Wenwen Cao, Yang Tian, Hu Xiong
Simultaneous detection of different diseases via a single fluorophore is challenging. We herein report a bichromatic fluorophore named Cy-914 for the simultaneous diagnosis of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and metastatic intestinal cancer by leveraging its NIR-I/NIR-II dual-color imaging capability. Cy-914 with a pKa of 6.98 exhibits high sensitivity to pH and viscosity, showing turn-on NIR-I fluorescence at 795 nm in an acidic tumor microenvironment, meanwhile displaying intense NIR-II fluorescence at 914/1030 nm under neutral to slightly basic viscous conditions. Notably, Cy-914 could sensitively and noninvasively monitor viscosity variations in the progression of NAFLD. More importantly, it was able to simultaneously visualize NAFLD (ex/em = 808/1000–1700 nm) and intestinal metastases (ex/em = 570/810–875 nm) in two independent channels without spectral cross interference after topical spraying, further improving fluorescence-guided surgery of tiny metastases less than 3 mm. This strategy may provide an understanding for developing multi-color fluorophores for multi-disease diagnosis.

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