3 years ago

Preparation of Gemini Surfactant/Conjugated Polymer Aggregates for Enhanced Fluorescence and Bioimaging Application

Preparation of Gemini Surfactant/Conjugated Polymer Aggregates for Enhanced Fluorescence and Bioimaging Application
Weiwei Zhao, Lingyun Zhou, Hua Wang, Libing Liu, Jianwu Wang, Yilin Wang, Chengcheng Zhou, Shu Wang
Conjugated polymers have great potential applications in bioimaging. However, the aggregation of conjugated polymers driven by electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions in aqueous media results in the reduction of photoluminescence quantum efficiency. In present work we synthesized a carboxylate gemini surfactant [sodium 2,6-didodecyl-4-hydroxy-2,6-diaza-1,7-heptanedicarboxylate (SDHC)] to adjust the aggregation behaviors and fluorescence properties of conjugated polymers [anionic poly(2-methoxy-5-propyloxy sulfonate phenylene vinylene) (MPS-PPV) and cationic poly(3-alkoxy-4-methylthiophene) (PMNT)]. This gemini surfactant shows very low critical micellar concentration (CMC) in aqueous solution and forms vesicles above CMC. In neutral and acidic conditions, MPS-PPV combines with the SDHC vesicles mainly via hydrophobic interactions and forms the aggregates in which the photoluminescence quantum efficiency of MPS-PPV is highly enhanced from 0.1% to 27%. As to PMNT, the molecules are located in the bilayer of SDHC vesicles through both electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions, and this structure prevents the production and release of reactive oxygen species. Moreover, SDHC is nontoxic and can effectively decrease the dark- and photocytotoxicity of MPS-PPV and PMNT, laying a good foundation for their bioimaging application. The living cell imaging indicates that the surfactant/conjugated polymer aggregates can stain the MCF-7 cells with main location in the lysosome. This work provides insight into how to improve the fluorescence properties and bioimaging applications of conjugated polymers by surfactants.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.7b07099

DOI: 10.1021/acsami.7b07099

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