Colloidal (Gd0.98Nd0.02)(2)O-3 nanothermometers operating in a cell culture medium within the first and second biological windows


Non-contact, self-referenced and near-infrared luminescent nanothermometers have been recognized as emerging tools in the fields of nanomedicine and nanotechnology due to their great capability of precise temperature readout at the nanoscale and real-time deep-tissue imaging. However, the development of multifunctional and biocompatible luminescent nanothermometers operating within the optically transparent biological windows with high thermal sensitivity (>2.0%/K) remains challenging. Here, we present (Gd0.98Nd0.02)(2)O-3 nanothermometers operated effectively within the first and second biological windows upon continuous-wave laser diode excitation at 808 nm. Ratiometric thermometric parameters are defined by the relative changes in the emission intensities originating from the two Stark components of the F-4(3/2) level (R-2 and R-1) to the I-4(9/2) (900-1000 nm), I-4(11/2) (1035-1155 nm) and I-4(13/2) (1300-1450 nm) multiplets. The thermometric parameters are evaluated for colloidal samples in a cell culture medium and powder samples, and the highest thermal sensitivity (2.18%/K at 298 K) is attained for the former in the first biological window (both the excitation and emission in the 800-965 nm range). The repeatability and temperature uncertainty are 99% and 1.2 K, respectively. The nanothermometers are biocompatible with human MNT-1 melanoma and HaCaT cells for 24 h of exposure and nanoparticle concentration up to 0.400 mg/mL, showing their potential for applications in nanomedicine, e.g., intracellular imaging and temperature mapping. (C) 2020 Chinese Society of Rare Earths. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.



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Debasu, ML; Oliveira, H; Rocha, J; Carlos, LD

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Project supported by CICECO-Aveiro Institute of Materials (FCT Ref. UID/CTM/50011/2019) and CESAM (Ref No. FCT UID/AMB/50017 - POCI01-0145-FEDER-007638).

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