Retrieval of a metabolite from cells with polyelectrolyte microcapsules

Small. 2010 Nov 5;6(21):2412-9. doi: 10.1002/smll.200901997.


To monitor cellular processes in individual cells, it is important to measure the concentrations of intracellular metabolites and to retrieve them for analysis. The use of functionalized polyelectrolyte microcapsules as intracellular sensors for in vivo reporting is persented. Capsules loaded with streptavidin-rhodamine, which was introduced into fibroblasts by electroporation, autonomously escaped from an endocytic compartment and efficiently recruited biotin-fluorescein from the cytosol. This work demonstrates the utility of polyelectrolyte microcapsules for intracellular capture of metabolites and eventually for drug delivery on an organismic level.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Avidin / chemistry
  • Capsules / chemistry*
  • Capsules / metabolism*
  • Chlorocebus aethiops
  • Electroporation
  • Microscopy, Confocal
  • Polymers / chemistry*
  • Rhodamines / chemistry
  • Streptavidin / chemistry
  • Vero Cells


  • Capsules
  • Polymers
  • Rhodamines
  • Avidin
  • Streptavidin