In this study we describe the construction of a system composed of thermally responsive molecules that can be induced to accumulate in tumor tissues by heating. EgX molecules consisting of an urea-benzene framework and oligoethylene glycol (OEG) functional groups with an emissive aminoquinoline formed nanoparticles (NPs) ∼10 nm in size at 23 °C with a fluorescence quantum yield of 7-10%. At higher temperatures, additional self-assembly occurred as a result of OEG dehydration, and the NPs grew to over 1000 nm in size; this was accompanied by low critical solution temperature behavior. EgXs accumulated in tumor tissues of mice at a body temperature of around 33-35 °C, an effect that was accelerated by external heating around the tumor to approximately 40 °C as a result of increased particle size and enhanced retention in tissue. These EgX NPs can serve as a tool for in vivo monitoring of tumor progression and response to treatment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Mechanical Engineering