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Water-Soluble Fluorescent Probes Based on Dendronized Polyfluorenes for Cell Imaging

Authors

  • Libin Bai,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Analytical Science and Technology of Hebei Province, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Wei Li,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Jingtian Chen,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Fuli Bo,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Baoxiang Gao,

    Corresponding author
    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Analytical Science and Technology of Hebei Province, Baoding 071002, China
    3. Key Laboratory of Medical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis, Ministry of Education, Baoding 071002, China
    • College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China.
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  • Hongmei Liu,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Analytical Science and Technology of Hebei Province, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Jingjing Li,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Yonggang Wu,

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Analytical Science and Technology of Hebei Province, Baoding 071002, China
    3. Key Laboratory of Medical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis, Ministry of Education, Baoding 071002, China
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  • Xinwu Ba

    1. College of Chemistry and Environmental Science, Hebei University, Baoding 071002, China
    2. Key Laboratory of Analytical Science and Technology of Hebei Province, Baoding 071002, China
    3. Key Laboratory of Medical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis, Ministry of Education, Baoding 071002, China
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Abstract

Novel water-soluble dendronized fluorescent polyfluorenes (DFPFs) are prepared from hydrophilic monomers and hydrophobic comonomers. Incomplete energy transfer is found to result in a two-color emission of the DFPFs at around 410 and 650 nm. The incomplete energy transfer can be attributed to the poor compatibility between the fluorene and benzothiadiazole units. Polyethylene oxide (PEO) encapsulation of the DFPFs shows over 90% cell viability, indicating good biocompatibility. These DFPFs show differential cellular uptake. P1 with fewer PEO chains exhibits limited cellular membrane uptake and low brightness in cells. By contrast, P3 with more PEO chains is efficiently internalized by cells and accumulated in the cytoplasm. A strong fluorescence from whole cells is also observed.

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