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Luminescent Nanoparticles with Lanthanide-Containing Poly(ethylene glycol)–Poly(ε-caprolactone) Block Copolymers

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journal contribution
posted on 10.11.2014, 00:00 by David C. Thévenaz, Christophe A. Monnier, Sandor Balog, Gina L. Fiore
Lanthanide-containing nanoparticles have attracted much attention due to their unique optical properties and potential in nanotechnological applications. An amphiphilic block copolymer of poly­(ethylene glycol)-b-poly­(ε-caprolactone) methyl ether (mPEG-PCL) was functionalized with a dipicolinic acid (dpa) moiety and coordinated to lanthanide ions to afford [Ln­(dpa-PCL-PEG-OCH3)3]­(HNEt3)3 (Ln = Eu3+, Tb3+). Micelle-like nanoparticles of dpa-PCL-PEG-OCH3 macroligand and metal-centered polymers were prepared by solvent displacement methods. Dynamic light scattering analysis (DLS) and cryogenic transmission electron microscopy images confirmed the presence of solid sphere (<47 nm in diameter) and vesicle (>47 nm in diameter) morphologies. The viability and stability of the lanthanide complexes in micelle-like nanoparticles was explored by DLS and luminescence spectroscopy, and found to be stable for several weeks.