Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are attractive materials for early detection, treatment, and imaging of cancer malignancies; however, they are limited by their inability to be monitored in vitro and in vivo [1]. Unlabeled CNTs are difficult to distinguish using elemental analysis because they are composed entirely of carbon, which is also characteristic of cellular membranes. Although some single walled nanotubes (SWNT) have been found to exhibit fluorescent properties, not all particles in a single batch fluoresce [2]. Additionally, these emissions may be too weak to be detected using conventional imaging modalities [3]. Incorporating fluorescent markers, such as fluorescent proteins or quantum dots, allows the non-fluorescent particles to be visualized. Previously, fluorophores, such as green fluorescent protein (GFP) or red fluorescent protein (RFP), have been used to visualize and track cells or other particles in biological environments, but their low quantum yield and tendency to photobleach generate limitations for their use in such applications.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.