Interaction of the CdSe quantum dots with plant cell walls

Colloids Surf B Biointerfaces. 2012 Mar 1;91:41-7. doi: 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2011.10.032. Epub 2011 Oct 25.


There is an increasing application of quantum dots (QDs) in plant science, as markers for the cells or their cell walls (CWs). In a plant cell the CW is a first target place for external agents. We studied interaction of CdSe QDs with CWs isolated from a conifer -Picea omorika (Panč) Purkynĕ branch. Binding of CdSe QDs was followed by using fluorescence microscopy, fluorescence and FT-IR spectroscopy. The aim of the study was to see whether the QDs induce structural changes in the CW, as well as to find out which kind of interactions between QDs and CWs occur and to which particular constituent polymers QDs preferably bind. The isolated CW is an appropriate object for study of the interactions with nanoparticles. The results show that in the CW, CdSe predominantly binds to cellulose, via OH groups and to lignin, via the conjugated CC/C-C chains. The differences in interaction of wet and dry CWs with QDs/chloroform were also studied. In the reaction of the dry CW sample with QDs/chloroform, hydrophobic interactions are dominant. When water was added after QDs/chloroform, hydrophilic interactions enable a partial reconstruction of the CC chains. The results have an implication on the use of the QDs in plant bio-imaging.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cadmium Compounds / chemistry*
  • Cell Wall / chemistry*
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Plants / chemistry*
  • Quantum Dots*
  • Selenium Compounds / chemistry*
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared


  • Cadmium Compounds
  • Selenium Compounds
  • cadmium selenide