Adipose Tissue-Derived Stem Cell Imaging Using Cadmium-Free Quantum Dots

Yoshiyuki Miyazaki, Hiroshi Yukawa, Hiroyasu Nishi, Yukihiro Okamoto, Noritada Kaji, Tsukasa Torimoto, Yoshinobu Baba

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Quantum dots (QDs) have received much attention for biomolecule and cell imaging applications because of their superior optical properties such as high quantum efficiency, size-tunable emission, and resistance to photobleaching process. However, QDs that are commercially available contain cadmium (Cd), a highly toxic element. Thus, the development of Cd-free and less toxic QDs is strongly desired. In this study, we developed Cd-free QDs (ZnS-coated ZnS-AgInS2 solid solution nanoparticles with a sulfo group: ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H) and investigated the ability of this material to label stem cells. ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H could be transduced into mouse adipose tissue-derived stem cells (mASCs) using octaarginine peptides (R8), known as cell-penetrating peptides. The optimal ratio of ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H:R8 was found to be 1:100 for labeling mASCs. More than 80% of mASCs labeled with 500 nM ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H were found to be alive, and the proliferation rates of labeled mASCs were maintained at the same rate as that of nonlabeled mASCs. In addition, no abnormalities in the morphology of mASCs labeled with ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H could be observed. These data suggest that ZnS-ZAIS-SO3H may be effective for the labeling of mASCs.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)91-7
    Number of pages7
    JournalCell medicine
    Issue number1-2
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 30 2013


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