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. 2016 Apr;12(3):771-788.
doi: 10.1016/j.nano.2015.11.009. Epub 2015 Dec 3.

Near-IR Responsive Nanostructures for Nanobiophotonics: Emerging Impacts on Nanomedicine


Near-IR Responsive Nanostructures for Nanobiophotonics: Emerging Impacts on Nanomedicine

Jun Song et al. Nanomedicine. .


Nanobiophotonics is an emerging field at the intersection of nanoscience, photonics, and biotechnology. Harnessing interactions of light with nanostructures enables new types of bioimaging, sensing, and light-activated therapy which can make a major impact on nanomedicine. Low penetration through tissue limits the use of visible light in nanomedicine. Near infrared (NIR) light (~780-1100 nm) can penetrate significantly further, enabling free-space delivery into deep tissues. This review focuses on interactions of NIR light with nanostructures to produce three effects: direct photoactivation, photothermal effects, and photochemical effects. Applications of direct photoactivation include bioimaging and biosensing using NIR-emitting quantum dots, materials with localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) in the NIR, and upconverting nanoparticles. Two key nanomedicine applications using photothermal effects are photothermal therapy (PTT), and photoacoustic (PA) imaging. For photochemical effects, we present the latest advances in in-situ upconversion and upconverting nanostructures for NIR activation of photodynamic therapy (PDT).

From the clinical editor: Nanobiophotonics is a relatively new field applying light for the interactions with nanostructures, which can be used in bioimaging, sensing, and therapy. As near infrared (NIR) light (~780-1100 nm) can have better tissue penetration, its clinical potential is far greater. In this review, the authors discussed the latest research on the applications of NIR light in imaging and therapeutics.

Keywords: Nanobiophotonics; Nanostructures; Near infrared; Photoactivation; Photodynamic therapy; Photothermal therapy.

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