Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Responsive Labels for Cells

Abstract:
How do you stick a label on something as small as a cell? Cell-labeling techniques are explained, and the use of polymer-coated nanoparticles as environment-sensitive cell labels is demonstrated by scientists in Germany and Australia.

Responsive Labels for Cells

Melbourne, Australia and Marburg, Germany | Posted on September 22nd, 2011

Many scientists are rising to the challenge of effective cell labeling by using nanoparticles as labels; these labels may be either fluorescent, magnetic, or radioactive. Nanoparticles are ideal for this purpose because they are smaller than a cell and can be taken up via the cell machinery and they can be made biocompatible. Nanoparticles can also have properties that make them easily observed from the outside, like fluorescence or magnetism. However water-soluble nanoparticles are not easy to make on a large scale, which can limit their use.

Paul Mulvaney (University of Melbourne, Australia), Wolfgang Parak (Philipps University of Marburg, Germany), and co-workers have reviewed attempts to date to make many sorts of nanoparticles soluble in water. They describe different approaches taken by various scientists, including ligand exchange and encapsulation.

Ligand exchange is useful because the smallest water-soluble nanoparticles can be made in this way, but it can reduce the quantum yield of fluorescent particles and the stability of all particles. This method can, however, be very useful to introduce new functional groups to the particle surface.

Encapsulation of nanoparticles with silica or polymers is another approach to increasing their water-solubility. Growing a silica shell around the particle adds both solubility and chemical functionality, but involves a complex procedure, whereas surrounding the nanoparticle with a layer of polymer that is attracted to both water and the particle can be relatively straightforward to achieve by self-assembly and the procedure does not change much for different particles, which makes it universal. Polymer-coated nanoparticles are very stable, but larger than those produced by ligand exchange.

The researchers don't stop there; they expand upon work they've done using polymer-coated nanoparticles to make sense of cell behavior. In particular, if a pH-sensitive and fluorescent polymer is chosen to coat the nanoparticles, then information can be gleaned about uptake into cells of the particle and any changes in the environment once it is there. So scientists truly can put responsive labels into cells, which should enable us to understand cell behavior better in the future.

####

For more information, please click here

Copyright © Wiley-VCH Materials Science Journals

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Forces of nature: Interview with microscopy innovators Gerd Binnig and Christoph Gerber August 26th, 2016

A promising route to the scalable production of highly crystalline graphene films August 26th, 2016

Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016

Stretchy supercapacitors power wearable electronics August 25th, 2016

Nanomedicine

Nanofiber scaffolds demonstrate new features in the behavior of stem and cancer cells August 25th, 2016

Johns Hopkins scientists track metabolic pathways to find drug combination for pancreatic cancer August 25th, 2016

50 years after the release of the film 'Fantastic Voyage,' science upstages fiction: Science upstages fiction with nanorobotic agents designed to travel in the human body to treat cancer August 25th, 2016

Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes August 24th, 2016

Discoveries

A promising route to the scalable production of highly crystalline graphene films August 26th, 2016

Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016

Johns Hopkins scientists track metabolic pathways to find drug combination for pancreatic cancer August 25th, 2016

New electrical energy storage material shows its power: Nanomaterial combines attributes of both batteries and supercapacitors August 25th, 2016

Announcements

Forces of nature: Interview with microscopy innovators Gerd Binnig and Christoph Gerber August 26th, 2016

A promising route to the scalable production of highly crystalline graphene films August 26th, 2016

Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016

New electrical energy storage material shows its power: Nanomaterial combines attributes of both batteries and supercapacitors August 25th, 2016

Nanobiotechnology

Analog DNA circuit does math in a test tube: DNA computers could one day be programmed to diagnose and treat disease August 25th, 2016

Nanofiber scaffolds demonstrate new features in the behavior of stem and cancer cells August 25th, 2016

Johns Hopkins scientists track metabolic pathways to find drug combination for pancreatic cancer August 25th, 2016

50 years after the release of the film 'Fantastic Voyage,' science upstages fiction: Science upstages fiction with nanorobotic agents designed to travel in the human body to treat cancer August 25th, 2016

Research partnerships

New electrical energy storage material shows its power: Nanomaterial combines attributes of both batteries and supercapacitors August 25th, 2016

New theory could lead to new generation of energy friendly optoelectronics: Researchers at Queen's University Belfast and ETH Zurich, Switzerland, have created a new theoretical framework which could help physicists and device engineers design better optoelectronics August 23rd, 2016

A new way to display the 3-D structure of molecules: Metal-organic frameworks provide a new platform for solving the structure of hard-to-study samples August 21st, 2016

Researchers watch catalysts at work August 19th, 2016

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic