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Nanomaterials 2011, 1(1), 20-30; doi:10.3390/nano1010020

Metallic Nanoparticle Block Copoloymer Vesicles with Enhanced Optical Properties

Institute of Biotechnology, University of Cambridge, Tennis Court Rd, CB21QT, Cambridge, UK
Received: 28 February 2011 / Revised: 8 April 2011 / Accepted: 3 May 2011 / Published: 9 May 2011
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The fabrication and characterization of template silver nanoshell structures and the encapsulation of gold nanoparticles using biocompatible poly(oxyethylene)-poly(butylene) diblock co-polymer vesicles is described in this work. These vesicles have a narrow diameter size distribution around 200 nm. Silver nanoparticles (Ø = 1–10 nm) functionalized with decanethiol were successfully entrapped in the hydrophobic membrane and non-functionalized gold nanoparticles (Ø = 3.0–5.5 nm) were encapsulated in the vesicle core. Transmission Electron Microscopy confirms the localisation of the particles; silver functionalized nanoparticles appear to thicken the vesicle membrane as shown with TEM image analysis. The enhancement of the optical properties is confirmed using transmission spectrophotometry; the 430 nm plasmon resonance peak of the silver nanoparticles was replaced by a broader extinction spectrum to beyond 700 nm (O.D. = 0.8). For a number density of 4.8 x 1012 mL-1 the scattering cross section was calculated to be 0.92 x 10-4 μm2 with a scattering coefficient of 0.44 mm-1. The measurements indicate scattering cross section of 3.8 x 10-5 μm2, attenuation coefficient of 0.18 mm-1 and extinction efficiency equal to 1.2 x 10-3. Stable and biocompatible block co-polymer vesicles can potentially be used as plasmon-resonant optical contrast agents for biomedical applications.
Keywords: block copolymer; metallic nanoparticle; optical properties; encapsulation block copolymer; metallic nanoparticle; optical properties; encapsulation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Martinez-Hurtado, J.L. Metallic Nanoparticle Block Copoloymer Vesicles with Enhanced Optical Properties. Nanomaterials 2011, 1, 20-30.

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