Sensitized emission from a chemotherapeutic drug conjugated to CdSe/ZnS QDs

S. Shankara Narayanan, Sudarson Sekhar Sinha, Samir Kumar Pal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Picosecond-resolved photoluminescence (PL) and polarization gated PL anisotropy measurements have been performed to confirm a strong sensitized emission from a chemotherapeutic drug, Merocyanine 540 (MC540), conjugated to highly luminescent CdSe/ZnS quantum dots (QDs) via Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) from QDs (donor) to the drug molecule (acceptor). Both steady-state and time-resolved PL measurements clearly confirm FRET to be the reason behind the PL quenching of the QDs (energy donor) in the QD-drug complex. The picosecond-resolved PL transients of QD-drug complex monitored at the donor (500 nm) and the acceptor peak emission (620 nm) wavelengths revealed a fast decay time for the donor (500 nm) and a rise component of similar time scale for the acceptor (620 nm). The observation of similar decay and rise times for the donor and the acceptor, respectively, in the QD-MC540 system gave a clear signature of the sensitized emission from MC540. Further confirmation of sensitization has been obtained from the picosecond-resolved anisotropy measurements, which revealed a fast component indicating efficient energy transfer from dipolar QD excitons to the conjugated drug molecules. It is anticipated that the present characterization of sensitized emission from a donor - acceptor pair formed by chemotherapeutic drugs and QDs can be applied to other systems as well for the confirmation of sensitized emission.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12716-12720
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number33
StatePublished - 21 Aug 2008
Externally publishedYes


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