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Biomimetic Synthesis of Fluorogenic Quantum Dots for Ultrasensitive Label-Free Detection of Protease Activities

Authors

  • Xuewen He,

    1. The Key Lab of Health Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis of Suzhou, College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University, 199 Ren'ai Road, Suzhou, 215123, P. R. China
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  • Nan Ma

    Corresponding author
    1. The Key Lab of Health Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis of Suzhou, College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University, 199 Ren'ai Road, Suzhou, 215123, P. R. China
    • The Key Lab of Health Chemistry and Molecular Diagnosis of Suzhou, College of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Soochow University, 199 Ren'ai Road, Suzhou, 215123, P. R. China.
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Abstract

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A biomimetic quantum dot synthesis-based strategy for ultrasensitive label-free detection of protease activities is reported. A dithiol peptide substrate can be activated by the protease through cleavage to form monothiol peptides, which then triggers QD growth and generates a photoluminescence signal readout. As low as 0.8 nM trypsin can be detected directly in buffer and serum and 4 pM trypsin can be detected via trypsinogen amplification with high signal to background ratios.

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