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Fabrication of Versatile Cyclodextrin-Functionalized Upconversion Luminescence Nanoplatform for Biomedical Imaging

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journal contribution
posted on 01.07.2014, 00:00 by Cheng Ma, Tong Bian, Sheng Yang, Changhui Liu, Tierui Zhang, Jinfeng Yang, Yinhui Li, Jishan Li, Ronghua Yang, Weihong Tan
Lanthanide-based upconversion nanoparticles (UCNPs) are a new type of luminescent tags that show great application potential in biomedical fields. However, a major challenge when applying UCNPs in biomedical research is the lack of a versatile strategy to make water-dispersible and biocompatible UCNPs with high simplicity in functionalization. To address this problem, in the present work, we employed 6-phosphate-6-deoxy-β-cyclodextrin (βPCD) as the novel ligand to fabricate a versatile upconversion luminescent nanoplatform. Using βPCD as the surface ligand not only enhances the stability and biocompatibility of the UCNPs under physiological conditions but also enables simple conjugation with various functional molecules, such as organic dyes and biomolecules, via the host–guest interaction between those molecules and the cyclodextrin cavity. The conjugated upconversion nanoprobe then displays excellent capability in labeling the cancer cells and tumor tissue slices for luminescent imaging. These results demonstrate that the versatile cyclodextrin-functionalized upconversion nanoplatform appears particularly flexible for further modifications, indicating great potential for applications in biosensing and bioimaging.