Quantum dots with their own light

03/07: Self-lit quantum dots eliminate the need for a light source in imaging

A major limitation to the use of quantum dots in live imaging applications has been the need to point light directly at them to detect where on the body they have been directed. However, now, researchers at Stanford University's Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence have developed a conjugated protein that acts as a quantum dot and generates its own light at the dot.

This new self-light quantum dot not only eliminates the need for an external light source, but also increases the sensitivity of live imaging applications.

The team, led by Stanford members Jianghong Rao, Ph.D. and Sanjiv Gambhir, M.D., Ph.D., reported their work in the journal Nature Biotechnology, where they describe how they used bioluminescent light generated by an engineered enzyme to elicit the normal fluorescent light signal from a conventional quantum dot.

Source: nano.cancer.gov

Topics related to quantum dots:

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Video: Sci-Tech Today: Quantum Dots Improve a Light Bulb

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