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Newly designed nanoparticle quantum dots simultaneously target and image prostate tumors in mice

cent proteins often used for imaging, and because they emit different wavelengths over a broad range of the light spectrum from visible to infrared, depending on their size and chemical composition, it is possible to "tune" them to tag and detect multiple biomarkers simultaneously. They can be illuminated by a light source, such as a laser or mercury lamp. Different sized quantum dots can be combined to detect multiple targets in a process called "multiplexing." And quantum dots are more resistant to photobleaching or fading than are conventional dyes used in imaging.

"It has been a difficult task to achieve both targeting and imaging in living animal models," Dr. Nie said. "The larger surface area provided by quantum dots should allow the conjugation of multiple agents, and we envision the development of diagnostic and therapeutic dual-modality quantum dots."

"We believe the unique properties of quantum dots will eventually allow us to use multiple colors and intensities to monitor multiple parameters at the same time for precise diagnosis and targeted treatment," Dr. Gao said. "We are developing quantum dots in the near-infrared spectrum, which should improve our ability for non-invasive and more sensitive imaging of deeper tissues."


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Contact: Holly Korschun
404-727-3990
Emory University Health Sciences Center
27-Jul-2004


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