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Organic Nanoparticles-Assisted Low-Power STED Nanoscopy

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posted on 13.04.2021, 18:39 authored by Zhongwei Man, Hongtu Cui, Zheng Lv, Zhenzhen Xu, Zhaoyang Wu, Yishi Wu, Qing Liao, Meihui Liu, Peng Xi, Lemin Zheng, Hongbing Fu
Stimulated emission depletion (STED) nanoscopy plays a key role in achieving sub-50 nm high spatial resolution for subcellular live-cell imaging. To avoid re-excitation, the STED wavelength has to be tuned at the red tail of the emission spectrum of fluorescent probes, leading to high depletion laser power that might damage the cell viability and functionality. Herein, with the highly emissive silica-coated core–shell organic nanoparticles (CSONPs) enabling a giant Stokes shift of 150 nm, ultralow power STED is achieved by shifting the STED wavelength to the emission maximum at 660 nm. The stimulated emission cross section is increased by ∼20-fold compared to that at the emission red tail. The measured saturation intensity and lateral resolution of our CSONP are 0.0085 MW cm–2 and 25 nm, respectively. More importantly, long-term (>3 min) dynamic super-resolution imaging of the lysosomal fusion–fission processes in living cells is performed with a resolution of 37 nm.