Microchimica Acta

, 186:152 | Cite as

Fluorometric nanoprobes for simultaneous aptamer-based detection of carcinoembryonic antigen and prostate specific antigen

  • Yali Sun
  • Jianfeng Fan
  • Linyan Cui
  • Wei Ke
  • Fangjie Zheng
  • Yuan ZhaoEmail author
Original Paper


A “turn-on” fluorometric assay based on the combined effects of fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) and internal filter effect (IFE) is described for the rapid and ultrasensitive detection of both carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) and prostate specific antigen (PSA). Their unique porous structures and high specific surface enable mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) to load a large number of CdTe quantum dots (QDs). These amplify the fluorescence signal and provide a platform to fabricate more distinctly fluorescent MSNs (QD-MSNs). Two kinds of QD-MSNs with the maximum emission wavelengths at 590 nm (orange) and 731 nm (dark red) were fabricated and served as two types of fluorescent probes for the dual detection. Two aptamers were covalently connected to fluorescent MSNs as the recognition unit to warrant the selectivity of assay. The fluorescence of QD-MSNs can be quenched by molybdenum disulfide nanosheets (MoS2) due to FRET mechanism, IFE also contributed to the the reduction of fluorescence intensity. The fluorescence of QD-MSNs was further recovered in the presence of CEA and PSA attributing to the excellent specificity of aptamers. A “turn-on” fluorescent two-channel nanoprobe is introduced for simultaneous quantification of CEA and PSA. The respective limits of detection (at S/N = 3) are 0.7 fg•mL−1 for CEA and 0.9 fg•mL−1 for PSA.

Graphical abstract

Schematic presentation of the turn-on fluorescent nanoprobes for simultaneous detection of CEA and PSA.


Fluorescence MoS2 nanosheets Dual detection CEA PSA 



This work was supported by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2017YFC1601700), Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20171136), China Postdoctoral Science Foundation (2015 M570405, 2016 T90417), and the 111 Project (B13025).

Compliance with ethical standards

The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

604_2019_3281_MOESM1_ESM.docx (4.7 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 4.66 MB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yali Sun
    • 1
  • Jianfeng Fan
    • 2
  • Linyan Cui
    • 1
  • Wei Ke
    • 1
  • Fangjie Zheng
    • 1
  • Yuan Zhao
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Key Lab of Synthetic and Biological Colloids, Ministry of Education, School of Chemical and Material EngineeringJiangnan UniversityWuxiChina
  2. 2.Wuxi Children’s HospitalJiangsuChina

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