Highly ordered periodic mesoporous organosilica nanoparticles with controllable pore structures.

PMID 22976432


A general synthetic procedure for highly ordered and well-dispersed periodic mesoporous organosilica (PMO) nanoparticles is reported based on a single cationic surfactant cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) and simple silica sources with organic bridging groups via an ammonia-catalyzed sol-gel reaction. By changing the bridging group in the silica sources, the pore structures of the as-made particles with three-dimensional hexagonal (P6(3)/mmc), cubic (Pm3n), two-dimensional hexagonal (P6mm), and wormlike structure were evidenced by powder X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The size range of the nanoparticles can be adjusted from 30 nm to 500 nm by variation of the ammonia concentration or the co-solvent content of the reaction medium. The PMO nanoparticles with high concentration of organic groups in the framework offered good thermal stability, good dispersion in low polarity solvent and high adsorption of small hydrophobic molecules. Finally, the dye functionalized PMO nanoparticles show low cytotoxicity and excellent cell permeability, which offers great potential for biomedical applications.