A Probe Based on a Soft Salt Complex for Ratiometric and Lifetime Imaging of Variations in Intracellular Oxygen Content

Yun Ma, Yafang Dong, Liang Zou, Liang Shen, Suyi Liu, Shujuan Liu, Wei Huang, Qiang Zhao, Wai Yeung Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, a soft salt complex based probe has been exploited for measuring oxygen content changes in living cells. The zinc(II) complex [Zn(tpy)2]2+(CH3COO)2 {tpy = 3-[(2,2′:6′,2′′-terpyridin)-4′-yl]-9-hexyl-9H-carbazole} was chosen as the cationic component, and the iridium(III) complex [Ir(tpq)2CN2]Bu4N+ [tpq = 2-(thiophen-2-yl)quinoline] was selected as the anionic component. The soft salt complex based probe was formed through electrostatic interaction between two oppositely charged complexes. This probe exhibits ratiometric photoluminescence response to different oxygen concentrations with two separated emission bands. Furthermore, the application of this probe in ratiometric and lifetime imaging of oxygen content changes in living cells has been demonstrated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2345-2349
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Inorganic Chemistry
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2018


  • Fluorescent probes
  • Imaging agents
  • Oxygen
  • Ratiometric imaging
  • Soft salt complexes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Inorganic Chemistry

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