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Cancer Diagnosis with Persistent Luminescent Nanoparticles

Cancer diagnostics is an extremely important issue, since the possibility of early diagnostics in combination with respective treatment can save lives. For diagnostics, molecular imaging becomes more and more important. The herein introduced nanoscale materials with persistent luminescence show high potential to be used for molecular imaging.

Molecular imaging is an emerging technology for visualization of cellular functions and for following processes in living organisms without perturbation. It can be used for diagnosis of cancer as well as for e.g. neurological and cardiovascular diseases. Furthermore the imaging not only contributes to the detection of diseases but also to the optimization of corresponding medical treatments.

Recently, the synthesis of persistent luminescence nanoparticles was described for imaging. Those particles allow very sensitive optical detection by avoiding autofluorescence of tissues, and the luminescence can last for several hours. However a big drawback is their large size (> 100 nm) which leads to issues in biocompatibility.

Herein is described a facile microwave-assisted synthesis of persistent luminescence nanoparticles with an average diameter of 6 nm for near-infrared in vivo imaging.

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