Ultra Bright Near‐Infrared Sulfonate‐Indolizine Cyanine‐ and Squaraine‐Albumin Chaperones: Record Quantum Yields and Applications

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Biological Sciences


The design of bright, high quantum yield (QY) materials in the near-infrared (NIR) spectral region in water remains a significant challenge. A series of cyanine and squaraine dyes varying water solubilizing groups and heterocycles are studied to probe the interactions of these groups with albumin in water. Unprecedented, 'ultra bright' emission in water is observed for a sulfonate indolizine squaraine dye (61.1% QY) and a sulfonate indolizine cyanine dye (46.7% QY) at NIR wavelengths of >700 nm and >800 nm, respectively. The dyes presented herein have a lower limit of detection than the most sensitive dyes known in the NIR region for albumin detection by at least an order of magnitude, which enables more sensitive diagnostic testing. Additionally, biotinylated human serum albumin complexed with the dyes reported herein was observed to function as an immunohistochemical reagent enabling high resolution imaging of cellular α-tubulin at low dye concentrations.

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