Pb(II) detection and versatile bio-imaging of green-emitting carbon dots with excellent stability and bright fluorescence.


Sun Z(1), Zhou Y(2), Zhou W(1), Luo J(1), Liu R(2), Zhang X(1), Zhou L(3), Pang Q(3).
Author information:
(1)Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of New Drug Screening, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510515, China. [Email]
(2)Biomaterials Research Center, School of Biomedical Engineering, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510515, China. [Email]
(3)School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Guangxi University, Nanning, 530004, China.


Green-emitting carbon dots (G-CDs) were synthesized via a simple and green hydrothermal method using betaine hydrochloride and sulfadiazine as carbon and nitrogen sources, respectively. Excellent luminescence stability with varying pH, salt concentrations, temperature is found with excitation-independent emission. G-CDs can be successfully used for the detection of Pb(ii) in the range of 0-200 μM. There was good linear relationship between the Pb(ii) concentration and G-CD fluorescence intensity with a correlation coefficient of 0.993, and the limit of detection (LOD) was 3.0174 μmol L-1. Due to its good biocompatibility, G-CDs can be successfully applied to zebrafish imaging as well as cell imaging, and the results show that G-CDs is more suitable for the zebrafish embryo imaging. Our results suggested that the obtained G-CDs can be used as multifunctional probes, highlighting their potential in different biological studies.