Upconversion Nanoparticles in Theranostics
Gang Han, Ph.D.
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology
University of Massachusetts Medical School
364 Plantation Street, LRB
Worcester MA 01605
Guanying Chen, Ph.D.
Institute for Lasers, Photonics, and Biophotonics
The State University of New York at Buffalo
Buffalo, New York 14260
Upconversion is a non-linear anti-Stokes process that efficiently converts two or more low-energy excitation photons, which are generally near infrared (NIR) light, into a higher energy outcome photon (e.g., NIR, visible, ultraviolet) through the use of long lifetime and real ladder-like energy levels of trivalent lanthanide ions embedded in an appropriate inorganic host lattice. Over the last decade, small-sized upconversion nanoparticles have attracted tremendous attention in theranostics owing to their unique optical and chemical properties, such as non-blinking, non-photobleaching, absence of autofluorescence, low-toxicity, low photodamage to live cells, and their remarkable ability to penetrate light in tissues. Uponversion nanocrystals are now active in medical diagnostics and imaging, in biosensing, drug delivery, photoactivation, tissue engineering, and light activated therapy. Multimodal upconversion nanocrystals (Optical/MRI, Optical/PET, and Optical/Plasmonics) are also currently emerging as a new set of nanoprobes for diverse biomedical applications. This special issue aims to highlight the development of upconversion nanocrystals and to explore the challenges and opportunities that scientists face when utilizing them for in vitro and in vivo theranostics. The journal Theranostics is open to receiving submissions in regard to original research articles, perspectives, and review articles in this area. The topics here should include, but not be limited to:
- The synthesis and characterization of upconversion nanoparticles with unique optical, surface and multifunctional properties towards biological applications.
- Optical and Multimodal bioimaging using upconversion nanoparticles.
- Applications of upconversion nanoparticles for drug delivery and gene delivery.
- Upconversion nanoparticles in biosensing.
- Applications for upconversion nanoparticles in light-activated photodynamic therapy.
- Cellular interactions, pharmacokinetics, and the toxicology of engineered upconversion nanoparticles.
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