Very small photoluminescent gold nanoparticles for multimodality biomedical imaging
An original synthesis method based on X-ray irradiation produced gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) with two important properties for biomedical research: intense visible photoluminescence and very high accumulation in cancer cells. The nanoparticles, coated with MUA (11-mercaptoundecanoid acid), are very small (1.4 nm diameter); the above two properties are not present for even slightly larger sizes. The small MUA-AuNPs are non-cytotoxic (except for very high concentrations) and do not interfere with cancer cell proliferation. Multimodality imaging using visible light fluorescence and X-ray microscopy is demonstrated by tracing the nanoparticle-loaded tumor cells. (C) 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.