Journal of Nanoparticle Research

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 775–783

Aptamer-modified gold nanoparticles for targeting breast cancer cells through light scattering


  • Yu-Fen Huang
    • Department of ChemistryNational Taiwan University
  • Yang-Wei Lin
    • Department of ChemistryNational Taiwan University
  • Zong-Hong Lin
    • Department of ChemistryNational Taiwan University
    • Department of ChemistryNational Taiwan University
    • Department of Natural Science EducationNational Taitung University
Research Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s11051-008-9424-x

Cite this article as:
Huang, Y., Lin, Y., Lin, Z. et al. J Nanopart Res (2009) 11: 775. doi:10.1007/s11051-008-9424-x


In this study, we demonstrated the potential use of nucleic acid ligand (aptamers) conjugated gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) for cancer cell detection. Through specific binding of the aptamers toward platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), MDA-MB-231 and Hs578T cells (cancer cells) that over-express PDGF, interact with Apt-AuNPs to a greater extent than do H184B5F5/M10 cells (normal cells). These results were confirmed through inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry measurements of the gold ion concentrations within these cells. Aggregation of the Apt-AuNPs in the cytoplasm of the cancer cells led to the generation of an intense scattered light upon photo-illumination; this phenomenon allows the differentiation of cancer cells from normal cells using a dark field optical microscope. The presence of Apt-AuNPs suppressed the proliferation of MDA-MB-231 cancer cells, but not H184B5F5/M10 cells.


AptamerGold nanoparticlesBreast cancer cellsImagingProliferationNanomedicine

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008