Tunable Luminescent Carbon Nanospheres with Well-Defined Nanoscale Chemistry for Synchronized Imaging and Therapy

Prabuddha Mukherjee, Santosh K. Misra, Mark C. Gryka, Huei Huei Chang, Saumya Tiwari, William L. Wilson, John W. Scott, Rohit Bhargava, Dipanjan Pan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


In this work, we demonstrate the significance of defined surface chemistry in synthesizing luminescent carbon nanomaterials (LCN) with the capability to perform dual functions (i.e., diagnostic imaging and therapy). The surface chemistry of LCN has been tailored to achieve two different varieties: one that has a thermoresponsive polymer and aids in the controlled delivery of drugs, and the other that has fluorescence emission both in the visible and near-infrared (NIR) region and can be explored for advanced diagnostic modes. Although these particles are synthesized using simple, yet scalable hydrothermal methods, they exhibit remarkable stability, photoluminescence and biocompatibility. The photoluminescence properties of these materials are tunable through careful choice of surface-passivating agents and can be exploited for both visible and NIR imaging. Here the synthetic strategy demonstrates the possibility to incorporate a potent antimetastatic agent for inhibiting melanomas in vitro. Since both particles are Raman active, their dispersion on skin surface is reported with Raman imaging and utilizing photoluminescence, their depth penetration is analysed using fluorescence 3D imaging. Our results indicate a new generation of tunable carbon-based probes for diagnosis, therapy or both.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4691-4703
Number of pages13
Issue number36
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Biotechnology
  • General Materials Science
  • Biomaterials


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