NIR Emission Nanoparticles Based on FRET Composed of AIE Luminogens and NIR Dyes for Two-photon Fluorescence Imaging

  • Lei-Jing Liu
  • Wen Liu
  • Guang Ji
  • Zhi-Yuan Wu
  • Bin Xu
  • Jun QianEmail author
  • Wen-Jing TianEmail author


Near-infrared (NIR) nanoparticles (NPs) based on fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) were prepared by coencapsulation of a red aggregation-induced emission (AIE) molecule, 2-(4-bromophenyl)-3-(4-(4-(diphenylamino)styryl)phenyl)fumaronitrile (TB), and a commercial NIR fluorescence dye, silicon 2,3-naphthalocyanine bis(trihexylsilyloxide) (NIR775) with an amphiphilic polymer poly(styrene-co-maleic anhydride) (PSMA). The surface of the NPs, PSMA@TB/NIR775, was modified with poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) to increase the in vivo biocompatibility of the NPs. The PSMA@TB/NIR775 NPs showed a strong NIR (780 nm) narrow emission and excellent two-photon absorption property. Moreover, the NPs exhibited good monodispersity, stability, and low cytotoxicity. Under the excitation of a 1040 nm femtosecond (fs) laser, the emission peaks at 680 nm of TB and 780 nm of NIR775 excited by FRET were obtained. We utilized PSMA@TB/NIR775 NPs as fluorescent contrast agents for two-photon excited NIR microscopic imaging, and good NIR imaging effect of mouse brain vasculature was obtained with the imaging depth of about 150 μm. The FRET strategy by coencapsulating AIE molecule and NIR dye will be helpful in preparing more narrow emission NIR probes for deep-tissue biological imaging.


NIR emission AIE FRET Two-photon imaging Amphiphilic polymer 


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This work was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 21835001, 51773080, 21674041, 51573068, and 21221063), Program for Changbaishan Scholars of Jilin Province, Jilin Province (No. 20160101305JC), and the “Talents Cultivation Program” of Jilin University.


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Copyright information

© Chinese Chemical Society, Institute of Chemistry (CAS) and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Lab for Supramolecular Structure and MaterialsJilin UniversityChangchunChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Modern Optical Instrumentations, Centre for Optical and Electromagnetic Research, JORCEP (Sino-Swedish Joint Research Center of Photonics)Zhejiang UniversityHangzhouChina

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