Distance dependence of single-fluorophore quenching by gold nanoparticles studied on DNA origami.
ABSTRACT We study the distance-dependent quenching of fluorescence due to a metallic nanoparticle in proximity of a fluorophore. In our single-molecule measurements, we achieve excellent control over structure and stoichiometry by using self-assembled DNA structures (DNA origami) as a breadboard where both the fluorophore and the 10 nm metallic nanoparticle are positioned with nanometer precision. The single-molecule spectroscopy method employed here reports on the co-localization of particle and dye, while fluorescence lifetime imaging is used to directly obtain the correlation of intensity and fluorescence lifetime for varying particle to dye distances. Our data can be well explained by exact calculations that include dipole-dipole orientation and distances. Fitting with a more practical model for nanosurface energy transfer yields 10.4 nm as the characteristic distance of 50% energy transfer. The use of DNA nanotechnology together with minimal sample usage by attaching the particles to the DNA origami directly on the microscope coverslip paves the way for more complex experiments exploiting dye-nanoparticle interactions.
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ABSTRACT: SERS nanoprobes for in vivo biomedical applications require high quantum yield, long circulation times, and maximum colloidal stability. Traditional synthetic routes require high metal–dye affinities and are challenged by unfavorable electrostatic interactions and limited scalability. We report the synthesis of a new near-IR active poly(N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide) (pHPMA). The integration of various SERS reporters into a biocompatible polymeric surface coating allows for controlled dye incorporation, high colloidal stability, and optimized in vivo circulation times. This technique allows the synthesis of very small (<20 nm) SERS probes, which is crucial for the design of excretable and thus highly translatable imaging agents. Depending on their size, the “schizophotonic” nanoparticles can emit both SERS and fluorescence. We demonstrate the capability of this all-in-one gold surface coating and SERS reporter for multiplexed lymph-node imaging.Angewandte Chemie 08/2014;
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ABSTRACT: Background Molecular sensing/imaging utilizing fluorophores has been one of the most frequently used techniques in biomedical research. As for any molecular imaging techniques, fluorescence mediated sensing always seeks for greater specificity and sensitivity. Since fluorophores emit fluorescence while their electron energy state changes, manipulating the local electromagnetic field around the fluorophores may be a way to enhance the specificity and sensitivity. Gold nanoparticles (GNPs) are known to form a very strong electromagnetic field on their surface [i.e., surface plasmon field (SPF)], upon receiving photonic energy. The level of fluorescence change by GNP-SPF may range from complete quenching to extensive enhancement, depending upon the SPF strength, excitation and emission wavelengths, and quantum yield of the fluorophore.Method Here, we report a novel design that utilizes BOTH fluorescence quenching and enhancement abilities of the GNP in one single nano-entity, providing high specificity and sensitivity. The construct utilizes a specially designed molecular dual-spacer that places the fluorphore at the location with an appropriate GNP-SFP strength before and after exposed to the biomarker. A model system to test the concept was an optical signal mediator activated by urokinase-type plasminogen activator (uPA; breast cancer secreting enzyme).ResultsThe resulting contrast agent showed less than 10% of the natural fluorescence but, in the presence of uPA, the fluorescence emission is triggered and emits its fluorescence approximately twice of the natural form.Conclusion This study demonstrated that our novel design of an optical contrast agent can be conditionally activated with enhanced sensitivity, using both quenching and enhancement phenomena of fluorophores in the electromagnetic field of the appropriate strengths (in this case, locally generated by the GNP-SPF) This entity is similar to molecular beacon in terms of specificity but with greater sensitivity. In addition, it is not restricted to only DNA or RNA sensing but for any designs that cause the change in the distance between the fluorophore and GNP, upon the time of encountering biomarker of interest.Journal of nanobiotechnology. 12/2014; 12(1):56.
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ABSTRACT: DNA origami nanostructures allow for the arrangement of different functionalities such as proteins, specific DNA structures, nanoparticles, and various chemical modifications with unprecedented precision. The arranged functional entities can be visualized by atomic force microscopy (AFM) which enables the study of molecular processes at a single-molecular level. Examples comprise the investigation of chemical reactions, electron-induced bond breaking, enzymatic binding and cleavage events, and conformational transitions in DNA. In this paper, we provide an overview of the advances achieved in the field of single-molecule investigations by applying atomic force microscopy to functionalized DNA origami substrates.Molecules (Basel, Switzerland). 01/2014; 19(9):13803-13823.