Polymersomes, smaller than you think: ferrocene as a TEM probe to determine core structure
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- Johnston, A.H., Dalton, P.D. & Newman, T.A. J Nanopart Res (2010) 12: 1997. doi:10.1007/s11051-010-9886-5
By incorporating ferrocene into the hydrophobic membrane of PEG-b-PCL polymersome nanoparticles it is possible to selectively visualize their core using Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM). Two different sizes of ferrocene-loaded polymersomes with mean hydrodynamic diameters of approximately 40 and 90 nm were prepared. Image analysis of TEM pictures of these polymersomes found that the mean diameter of the core was 4–5 times smaller than the mean hydrodynamic diameter. The values obtained also allow the surface diameter and internal volume of the core to be calculated.