Quantitative characterization of the lipid encapsulation of quantum dots for biomedical applications

Justin F. Galloway, Alan Winter, Kwan Hyi Lee, Jea Ho Park, Charlene M. Dvoracek, Peter Devreotes, Peter C. Searson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The water solubilization of nanoparticles is key for many applications in biomedicine. Despite the importance of surface functionalization, progress has been largely empirical and very few systematic studies have been performed. Here we report on the water solubilization of quantum dots using lipid encapsulation. We systematically evaluate the monodispersity, zeta potential, stability, and quantum yield for quantum dots encapsulated with single and double acyl-chain lipids, pegylated double acyl-chain lipids, and single alkyl-chain surfactant molecules with charged head groups. We show that charged surfactants and pegylated lipids are important to obtain monodisperse suspensions with high yield and excellent long-term stability. From the Clinical Editor: This study reports on solubilization of nanoparticles in water, a key, but often neglected aspect for biomedical applications. The authors demonstrate that charged surfactants and PEGylated lipids are important to obtain monodisperse suspensions with high yield and long-term stability.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1190-1199
Number of pages10
JournalNanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 2012



  • Biomedicine
  • Lipids
  • Quantum dots
  • Solubilization
  • Surface functionalization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Pharmaceutical Science

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