PEG modified BaGdF5: Yb/Er nanoprobes for multi-modal upconversion fluorescent, in vivo X-ray computed tomography and biomagnetic imaging

Songjun Zeng, Ming Kiu Tsang, Chi Fai Chan, Ka Leung Wong, Jianhua Hao

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

225 Citations (Scopus)


Herein, a multi-functional nanoprobe of polyethylene glycol (PEG) modified BaGdF5:Yb/Er upconversion nanoparticles (UCNPs) for tri-modal bioimaging of fluorescence, computed X-ray tomography (CT), and magnetic application is demonstrated for the first time. The PEG-modified BaGdF5:Yb/Er UCNPs with optimal small size were synthesized by a facile one-pot hydrothermal method. The as-designed single-phase nanoprobe presents near-infrared to visible upconversion emissions in UC fluorescent bioimaging of HeLa cell. Importantly, we have demonstrated in vivo CT images with enhanced signals of spleen of a mouse for 2 h, indicating the UCNPs can be successfully used as CT contrast agent for improving the detection of splenic diseases. In addition, these UCNPs also exhibit excellent intrinsic paramagnetic property which can be also for magnetic imaging. Therefore, our results indicate that a tri-modal nanoprobe served as fluorescent/CT/magnetic bioimaging can be realized using the PEG-modified BaGdF5:Yb/Er UCNPs with very low cytotoxicity and long circulation time, which would be very useful in a variety of biomedical application fields.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9232-9238
Number of pages7
Issue number36
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2012


  • Fluorecent bio-imaging
  • Magnetic property
  • Nanoparticle
  • Upconversion
  • X-ray computed tomography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Biophysics

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