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Keywords:

  • antitumor agents;
  • bioinorganic chemistry;
  • DNA;
  • fluorescent probes;
  • imaging agents
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Dead or alive: We report the successful cellular uptake of two ruthenium polypyridyl DNA light switch complexes that function as multifunctional cellular DNA imaging agents and display potent cytotoxicity against cancer cells. The cytotoxic properties of one complex are of great interest as it offers a potential lead for the development of a new class of anticancer drug in addition to its use as a cellular DNA imaging agent.