Light-responsive polyelectrolyte/gold nanoparticle microcapsules

J Phys Chem B. 2005 Feb 24;109(7):3071-6. doi: 10.1021/jp045070x.


We report the preparation and characterization of light-responsive delivery vehicles, microcapsules composed of multiple polyelectrolyte layers and light-absorbing gold nanoparticles. The nanostructured capsules were loaded with macromolecules (fluorescein isothiocyanate-labeled dextran) by exploiting the pH-dependence of the shell permeability, and the encapsulated material was released on demand upon irradiation with short (10 ns) laser pulses in the near-infrared (1064 nm). In addition, the polyelectrolyte multilayer shell was modified with lipids (dilauroylphosphatidylethanolamine) and then functionalized with ligands (monoclonal immunoglobulin G antibodies) for the purposes of enhanced stability and targeted delivery, respectively. We anticipate that these capsules will find application in a range of areas where controlled delivery is desirable.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Capsules
  • Drug Delivery Systems*
  • Electrolytes / chemistry*
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate / chemistry
  • Gold / chemistry*
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Lasers
  • Light*
  • Lipids / chemistry
  • Metal Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence / methods
  • Permeability
  • Spectrophotometry, Infrared


  • Capsules
  • Electrolytes
  • Lipids
  • Gold
  • Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate