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Journal of Biomedical Optics

Time-gated cell imaging using long lifetime near-infrared-emitting quantum dots for autofluorescence rejection
Author(s): Sophie Bouccara; Alexandra Fragola; Emerson Giovanelli; Gary Sitbon; Nicolas Lequeux; Thomas Pons; Vincent Loriette
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Paper Abstract

Fluorescence imaging is a promising technique for the detection of individual cell migration. Its sensitivity is, however, limited by a high tissue autofluorescence and a poor visible light penetration depth. In order to solve this problem, the fluorescence signal peak wavelength should lie in an absorption and diffusion free region and should be distinguishable, either spectrally or temporally, from the autofluorescence background. We present, here, the synthesis and characterization of low toxicity Zn–Cu–In–Se/ZnS core/shell quantum dots. Their fluorescence emission wavelength peaks around 800 nm, where the absorption and scattering of tissues are minimal. They are coated with a new ligand, which yields small, stable, and bright individual probes in the live cell cytoplasm, even 48 h after the labeling. Furthermore, these near-infrared-emitting quantum dots have a long fluorescence lifetime component (around 150 ns) compared to autofluorescence (<5  ns ). Taking the advantage of this property and coupling these probes to a time-gated detection, we demonstrate efficiently the discrimination between the signal and short lifetime fluorescence such as the autofluorescence. This technique is supported by a method we developed, to massively stain cells that preserves the quantum dot stability and brightness for 48 h.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 January 2014
PDF: 8 pages
J. Biomed. Opt. 19(5) 051208 doi: 10.1117/1.JBO.19.5.051208
Published in: Journal of Biomedical Optics Volume 19, Issue 5
Show Author Affiliations
Sophie Bouccara, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles de la Ville de Paris (France)
Alexandra Fragola, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)
Emerson Giovanelli, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)
Gary Sitbon, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)
Nicolas Lequeux, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)
Thomas Pons, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)
Vincent Loriette, Ecole Supérieure de Physique et de Chimie Industrielles (France)


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