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Stable Functionalization of Small Semiconducting Polymer Dots via Covalent Cross-Linking and Their Application for Specific Cellular Imaging



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A facile cross-linking strategy covalently links functional molecules to semiconducting polymer dots (Pdots) while simultaneously providing functional groups for biomolecular conjugation. In addition to greatly enhanced stability, the formed Pdots are small (<10 nm), which can be difficult to achieve with current methods but is highly desirable for most biological applications. These characteristics are significant for improving labeling efficiency and sensitivity in cellular assays that employ Pdots.