Nano Research

, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 649–665 | Cite as

1.3 μm emitting SrF2:Nd3+ nanoparticles for high contrast in vivo imaging in the second biological window

  • Irene Villa
  • Anna Vedda
  • Irene Xochilt Cantarelli
  • Marco Pedroni
  • Fabio Piccinelli
  • Marco Bettinelli
  • Adolfo Speghini
  • Marta Quintanilla
  • Fiorenzo Vetrone
  • Ueslen Rocha
  • Carlos Jacinto
  • Elisa Carrasco
  • Francisco Sanz Rodríguez
  • Ángeles Juarranz
  • Blanca del Rosal
  • Dirk H. Ortgies
  • Patricia Haro Gonzalez
  • José García Solé
  • Daniel Jaque GarcíaEmail author
Research Article


Novel approaches for high contrast, deep tissue, in vivo fluorescence biomedical imaging are based on infrared-emitting nanoparticles working in the so-called second biological window (1,000–1,400 nm). This allows for the acquisition of high resolution, deep tissue images due to the partial transparency of tissues in this particular spectral range. In addition, the optical excitation with low energy (infrared) photons also leads to a drastic reduction in the contribution of autofluorescence to the in vivo image. Nevertheless, as is demonstrated here, working solely in this biological window does not ensure a complete removal of autofluorescence as the specimen’s diet shows a remarkable infrared fluorescence that extends up to 1,100 nm. In this work, we show how the 1,340 nm emission band of Nd3+ ions embedded in SrF2 nanoparticles can be used to produce autofluorescence free, high contrast in vivo fluorescence images. It is also demonstrated that the complete removal of the food-related infrared autofluorescence is imperative for the development of reliable biodistribution studies.


fluorescence imaging rare earth doped nanoparticles nanomedicine 


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Copyright information

© Tsinghua University Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Irene Villa
    • 1
  • Anna Vedda
    • 1
  • Irene Xochilt Cantarelli
    • 2
  • Marco Pedroni
    • 2
  • Fabio Piccinelli
    • 2
  • Marco Bettinelli
    • 2
  • Adolfo Speghini
    • 2
  • Marta Quintanilla
    • 3
  • Fiorenzo Vetrone
    • 3
  • Ueslen Rocha
    • 4
  • Carlos Jacinto
    • 4
  • Elisa Carrasco
    • 5
  • Francisco Sanz Rodríguez
    • 5
  • Ángeles Juarranz
    • 5
  • Blanca del Rosal
    • 6
  • Dirk H. Ortgies
    • 6
  • Patricia Haro Gonzalez
    • 6
  • José García Solé
    • 6
  • Daniel Jaque García
    • 6
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Materials ScienceUniversity of Milano-BicoccaMilanoItaly
  2. 2.Dipartimento di BiotecnologieUniversità di Verona and INSTM, UdR VeronaVeronaItaly
  3. 3.Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique-Energie Materiaux et TelecommunicationsUniversité du QuebecVarennesCanada
  4. 4.Grupo de Fotônica e Fluidos Complexos, Instituto de FísicaUniversidade Federal de AlagoasMaceió, AlagoasBrazil
  5. 5.Departamento de Biología, Facultad de CienciasUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  6. 6.Fluorescence Imaging Group, Departamento de Física de Materiales, Facultad de Ciencias, Campus de CantoblancoUniversidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain

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