Research Article

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2019, 12(6): 1313–1320

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https://doi.org/10.1007/s12274-018-2262-y

Shape-controlled synthesis of liquid metal nanodroplets for photothermal therapy

Junjie Yan1,2,3,4,§, Xudong Zhang1,3,4,§, Yang Liu5, Yanqi Ye1,3,4, Jicheng Yu1,3,4, Qian Chen1,3,4, Jinqiang Wang1,3,4, Yuqi Zhang1,3,4, Quanyin Hu1,3,4, Yang Kang1,3,4, Min Yang2 (*), and Zhen Gu1,3,4,6,7 (*)

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1 Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
2 Molecular Imaging Center, Key Laboratory of Nuclear Medicine, Ministry of Health, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Molecular Nuclear Medicine, Jiangsu Institute of Nuclear Medicine, Wuxi 214063, China
3 Department of Bioengineering, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
4 California NanoSystems Institute, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
5 Department of Materials Science & Engineering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
6 Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
7 Center for Minimally Invasive Therapeutics, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA
§ Junjie Yan and Xudong Zhang contributed equally to this work.

Keywords: liquid metal, melanin nanoparticles, nanomedicine, shape-controlled synthesis, photothermal therapy
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  • Abstract
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The capping agents for liquid metal (LM) nanodroplets in aqueous solutions are restricted to thiol-containing and positively-charged molecules or macromolecules. However, both thiolate-metal complex and electrostatic interaction are liable to detachment upon strong mechanical forces such as sonication, leading to limited stability and applications. To address this, we utilized ultrasmall water soluble melanin nanoparticles (MNPs) as the capping agent, which exhibited strong metal binding capability with the oxide layer of gallium based LMs and resulted in enhanced stability. Interestingly, shape-controlled synthesis of LM nanodroplets can be achieved by the incorporation of MNPs. Various EGaIn nanostructures including nanorice, nanosphere and nanorod were obtained by simply tuning the feed ratio, sonication time, and suspension temperature. Among these shapes, EGaIn nanorice has the best photothermal conversion efficiency, which could be leveraged for photothermal therapy.
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Shape-controlled synthesis of liquid metal nanodroplets for photothermal therapy. Nano Res. 2019, 12(6): 1313–1320 https://doi.org/10.1007/s12274-018-2262-y

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