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Open AccessArticle

Enhancing Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) Efficiency of Titania–Lanthanide Hybrid Upconversion Nanomaterials by Shortening the Donor–Acceptor Distance

by Syue-Liang Lin 1,2,3,4,*, Han-Chun Chen 1 and Cheng Allen Chang 1,2,4,*
1
Department of Biomedical Imaging and Radiological Sciences, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
2
Department of Biotechnology and Laboratory Science in Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
3
Department of Biomedical Engineering, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
4
Biomedical Engineering Research and Development Center, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nanomaterials 2020, 10(10), 2035; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano10102035
Received: 14 September 2020 / Revised: 9 October 2020 / Accepted: 13 October 2020 / Published: 15 October 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanobiophotonics, Photomedicine, and Imaging)
Several robust titania (TiO2) coated core/multishell trivalent lanthanide (Ln) upconversion nanoparticles (UCNPs) hybrid architecture designs have been reported for use in photodynamic therapy (PDT) against cancer, utilizing the near-infrared (NIR) excited energy down-shifting and up-conversion chain of Nd3+793-808 nm) → Yb3+980 nm) → Tm3+475 nm) → TiO2 to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS) for deep tissue-penetrating oxidative cytotoxicity, e.g., NaLnF4:Yb,Tm (Ln = Y, Gd). Herein, we demonstrate that by doping the Tm3+ emitter ions in the outer shell and the Nd3+ sensitizer ions in the core, the newly designed NaYF4:Nd,[email protected]@Yb,[email protected]2 hybrid UCNPs exert more ROS production than the reference NaYF4:Yb,[email protected]@Nd,[email protected] TiO2 with the Tm3+ ions in the core and the Nd3+ ions in the outer shell, upon 793 nm laser irradiation, primarily due to the shortening of the Tm3+-TiO2 distance of the former with greater Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) efficiency. After coating with polyallylamine hydrochloride (PAH)/polyethylene glycol folate (PEG-FA), the resulting NaYF4:Nd,[email protected]@Yb,[email protected]2-PAH-PEG-FA hybrid nanocomposites could be internalized in MDA-MB-231 cancer cells, which also show low dark cytotoxicity and effective photocytotoxicity upon 793 nm excitation. These nanocomposites could be further optimized and are potentially good candidates as nanotheranostics, as well as for other light-conversion applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: Nd3+ sensitized upconversion; lanthanide; photodynamic therapy Nd3+ sensitized upconversion; lanthanide; photodynamic therapy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lin, S.-L.; Chen, H.-C.; Chang, C.A. Enhancing Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) Efficiency of Titania–Lanthanide Hybrid Upconversion Nanomaterials by Shortening the Donor–Acceptor Distance. Nanomaterials 2020, 10, 2035.

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