Chemistry, an Asian journal

Photoswitchable and Water-Soluble Fluorescent Nano-Aggregates Based on a Diarylethene-Dansyl Dyad and Liposome.

PMID 27897383


In this work, a unique approach is developed to generate photoswitchable and water-soluble fluorescent nano-aggregates. Initially, a new light-controlled diarylethene-dansyl dyad DAE 1 is formed by linking two dansyl fluorophores covalently to a symmetrical dithienylethene backbone, whose photophysical properties can be reversibly switched by optical stimuli. Subsequently, the water insolubility of the molecular switch 1 is overcome by incorporating it into the bilayer of liposome DPPC (1,2-dihexadecanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine) in water. This strategy creates stable fluorescent nano-aggregates OF-1@DPPC (≈25 nm diameter) that are soluble in an aqueous medium. The nano-aggregates OF-1@DPPC retain and even improve the photoswitchable fluorescence properties of DAE 1. More importantly, OF-1@DPPC exhibits a remarkable photostability and fatigue resistance after 5 cycles of irradiation with UV and visible light, which is crucial for its practical application.