Nanosensors capable of simultaneously measuring dissolved oxygen concentrations from 0 to 100% saturation and pH over the full physiological range, from pH 3.5 to 7.5, that advance the methods towards understanding of key biological gradients, were synthesised. A library of water soluble oxygen-sensitive porphyrins, with three substituted charged functional groups and a chemically flexible carboxylate functional group were spectroscopically analysed to assess their sensitivity to changes in dissolved oxygen concentrations as free species in solution and in suspension as nanoparticle conjugates. A platinum cationic porphyrin was taken forward to fabricate ratiometric oxygen-sensitive nanosensors, using 5-(and-6)-carboxytetramethylrhodamine (TAMRA) as internal standard. In addition, quadruple labelled dual oxygen and pH-sensitive nanosensors were synthesised using the cationic Pt porphyrin, pH-sensitive fluorescein dyes, carboxyfluorescein (FAM) and Oregon Green (OG), in a 1:1 ratio, and TAMRA. We envisage the dual oxygen and pH nanosensors will find broad utility in the characterisation of diverse microenvironments, where there are complex interactions between molecular oxygen and pH.
Chauhan, V. M., Giuntini, F., & Aylott, J. W. (2016). Quadruple labelled dual oxygen and pH-sensitive ratiometric nanosensors. Sensing and Bio-Sensing Research, 8, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbsr.2016.03.007