AIE PROBES FOR BIOMEDICAL APPLICATIONS
National University of Singapore, Singapore Institute of Materials Research and Engineering, A*STAR, Singapore
Fluorogens with aggregataion-induced emission (AIE) characteristics have recently aroused significant research interest. The unique AIE process offers a straightforward solution to the aggregation-caused quenching problem faced by traditional fluorophores. In this talk, we summarize our recent AIE work to highlight the utility of AIE effect in the development of new fluorescent bioprobes, which allows the use of highly concentrated fluorogens for biosensing and imaging. The simple design and fluorescence turn-on feature of the molecular AIE bioprobes offer direct visualization of specific analytes and biological processes in aqueous media with higher sensitivity and better accuracy than traditional fluorescence turn-off probes. The AIE dot-based bioprobes with different formulations and surface functionalities show advanced features over quantum dots and small molecule dyes, such as large absorptivity, high luminosity, excellent biocompatibility, free of random blinking, and strong photobleaching resistance. In addition, our recent discovery that AIE fluorogens with strong reactive oxygen species generation in solid state further expanded their applications to cancer therapy. These features enable cancer cell detection, long term cell tracing, and image-guided therapy in a noninvasive and high contrast manner.