Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 100, Issue 2, pp 961–968 | Cite as

Design and preparation of quantum dots fluorescent probes for in situ identification of Microthrix parvicella in bulking sludge

  • Xuening FeiEmail author
  • Wenke Sun
  • Lingyun CaoEmail author
  • Xiumei Jiao
  • Dayong Lin
  • Guozhi Jia
Environmental biotechnology


A series of quantum dots (QDs) fluorescent probes for the in situ identification of Microthrix parvicella (M. parvicella) in bulking sludge were designed and prepared. In the preparation of CdTe/CdS QDs, the 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid (11-acid) and 16-mercaptohexadecanoic acid (16-acid) were used as the stabilizer. The prepared QDs probes were characterized by Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and the results showed that the CdTe/CdS QDs formed a core-shell structure and the long carbon chain was successfully grafted onto its surface. And the three QDs probes had different crystallinity and particle size, which was due to the inhibition effect of long carbon chain. The optical properties test results showed that although the formed core-shell structure and long carbon chain affected the fluorescent intensity, adsorption, and emission spectra of the QDs probes, the probes B and C had a large stokes-shift of 82 and 101 nm, which was a benefit for their fluorescent labeling property. In the fluorescent identification of M. parvicella, the probes B and C effectively adsorbed onto the surface of M. parvicella through a hydrophobic bond, and then identified M. parvicella by their unique fluorescence. In addition, it was found that a better hydrophobic property resulted in better identification efficiency.


Fluorescent QDs probes Hydrophobic In situ identification Microthrix parvicella 


Compliance with Ethics Guidelines


This research was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (51178289).

Conflict of interest

The author Xuening Fei declares that he has no conflict of interest.

The author Lingyun Cao declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Environmental and Municipal EngineeringTianjin Chengjian UniversityTianjinChina
  2. 2.School of ScienceTianjin Chengjian UniversityTianjinChina
  3. 3.School of Environmental Science and EngineeringTianjin UniversityTianjinChina

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