CdS quantum dots as fluorescence probes for the sensitive and selective detection of highly reactive HSe− ions in aqueous solution
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Water-soluble cadmium sulfide (CdS) quantum dots (QDs) capped by mercaptoacetic acid were synthesized by aqueous-phase arrested precipitation, and characterized by transmission electron microscopy, spectrofluorometry, and UV-Vis spectrophotometry. The prepared luminescent water-soluble CdS QDs were evaluated as fluorescence probes for the detection of highly reactive hydrogen selenide ions (HSe− ions). The quenching of the fluorescence emission of CdS QDs with the addition of HSe− ions is due to the elimination of the S2− vacancies which are luminescence centers. Quantitative analysis based on chemical interaction between HSe− ions and the surface of CdS QDs is very simple, easy to develop, and has demonstrated very high sensitivity and selectivity features. The effect of foreign ions (common anions and biologically relevant cations) on the fluorescence of the CdS QDs was examined to evaluate the selectivity. Only Cu2+ and S2− ions exhibit significant effects on the fluorescence of CdS QDs. With the developed method, we are able to determine the concentration of HSe− ions in the range from 0.10 to 4.80 μmol L−1, and the limit of detection is 0.087 μmol L−1. The proposed method was successfully applied to monitor the obtained HSe− ions from the reaction of glutathione with selenite. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on fluorescence analysis of HSe− ions in aqueous solution.