Tracking the Fate of Porous Silicon Nanoparticles Delivering a Peptide Payload by Intrinsic Photoluminescence Lifetime
Authors and Affiliations
A nanoparticle system for systemic delivery of therapeutics is described, which incorporates a means of tracking the fate of the nanocarrier and its residual drug payload in vivo by photoluminescence (PL). Porous silicon nanoparticles (PSiNPs) containing the proapoptotic antimicrobial peptide payload, D[KLAKLAK]2, are monitored by measurement of the intrinsic PL intensity and the PL lifetime of the nanoparticles. The PL lifetime of the PSiNPs is on the order of microseconds, substantially longer than the nanosecond lifetimes typically exhibited by conventional fluorescent tags or by autofluorescence from cells and tissues; thus, emission from the nanoparticles is readily discerned in the time-resolved PL spectrum. It is found that the luminescence lifetime of the PSiNP host decreases as the nanoparticle dissolves in phosphate-buffered saline solution (37 °C), and this correlates with the extent of release of the peptide payload. The time-resolved PL measurement allows tracking of the in vivo fate of PSiNPs injected (via tail vein) into mice. Clearance of the nanoparticles through the liver, kidneys, and lungs of the animals is observed. The luminescence lifetime of the PSiNPs decreases with increasing residence time in the mice, providing a measure of half?life for degradation of the drug nanocarriers.
Keywords : biodegradation, bioimaging, photoluminescence lifetime, theranostics, time-gated luminescence imaging