UNIT 25.1 In Vivo Imaging Using Quantum Dot–Conjugated Probes

  1. Diane S. Lidke1,
  2. Peter Nagy2,
  3. Donna J. Arndt-Jovin3

Published Online: 1 SEP 2007

DOI: 10.1002/0471143030.cb2501s36

Current Protocols in Cell Biology

Current Protocols in Cell Biology

How to Cite

S. Lidke, D., Nagy, P. and J. Arndt-Jovin, D. 2007. In Vivo Imaging Using Quantum Dot–Conjugated Probes. Current Protocols in Cell Biology. 36:25.1:25.1.1–25.1.18.

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico

  2. 2

    University of Debrecen, Debrecen, Hungary

  3. 3

    Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Goettingen, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 SEP 2007
  2. Published Print: SEP 2007


This unit describes the use of quantum dots (QDs) for live-cell imaging and the use of QDs in flow cytometry for quantitative analysis of ligand binding constants and receptor density. Conventional fluorophores and visible fluorescent protein (VFP) constructs have allowed visualization of many cellular processes. However, organic and biomolecular fluorophores have limitations in their applications, due to their small Stokes' shift and tendency to photobleach during prolonged imaging. QDs have many advantages over conventional fluorophores, including high brightness and photostability, which make them an exceptional tool for live-cell imaging. There are a large variety of commercially available QDs with different surface reactivities and characteristics. The authors have limited the laboratory protocols presented here to the use of streptavidin-coupled QDs because this gives almost universal applicability to any cell surface receptor by coupling the ligand or antibody that recognizes the receptor to biotin and visualizing the complex by use of QDs. Curr. Protoc. Cell Biol. 36:25.1.1-25.1.18. © 2007 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


  • quantum dots;
  • live-cell imaging;
  • binding constants;
  • receptor number;
  • biotinylated ligands