ACS applied materials & interfaces

Aspirin-Based Carbon Dots, a Good Biocompatibility of Material Applied for Bioimaging and Anti-Inflammation.

PMID 27934165


The emerging photoluminescent carbon-based nanomaterials are promising in various fields besides cell imaging and carrier transport. Carbon nanomaterials with specific biological functions, however, are rarely investigated. Aspirin is a very common anti-inflammatory medication to relieve aches and pains. In this study, we have tried to create a carbon nanoparticle with aspirin, and we expect that this new carbon nanoparticle will have both anti-inflammatory and fluorescent biomarker functions. Fluorescent aspirin-based carbon dots (FACDs) were synthesized by condensing aspirin and hydrazine through a one-step microwave-assisted method. Imaging data demonstrated that FACDs efficiently entered into human cervical carcinoma and mouse monocyte macrophage cells in vitro with low cell toxicity. Results from quantitative polymerase chain reaction and histological analysis indicated that FACDs possessed effective anti-inflammatory effects in vitro and in vivo compared to aspirin only. Hematology, serum biochemistry, and histology results suggested that FACDs also had no significant toxicity in vivo. Our results clearly demonstrate that FACDs have dual functions, cellular imaging/bioimaging and anti-inflammation, and suggest that FACDs have great potential in future clinical applications.