Hierarchical conjugate structure of γ-Fe2O3 nanoparticles and PbSe quantum dots for biological applications

Lioz Etgar, Efrat Lifshitz, Rina Tannenbaum*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


The development and characterization of a unique conjugated structure comprised of γ-Fe2O3 nanoparticles (NPs) and PbSe nanocrystal quantum dots (NQDs), bonded via chemical functional groups, are discussed. Compatibility with an aqueous environment was rendered by exchanging the traditional organic surfactants (oleic acid) of the PbSe NQDs and γ-Fe2O3 NPs with 2-aminoethanethiol and polyhedral silsesquioxane hydrate octakis ligands, respectively. Comparison of the transmission electron microscopy (TEM) images of the PbSe NQDs and γ-Fe2O3 NPs capped with either organic or water-soluble ligands highlights the preservation of the morphology and size of both types of nanoclusters upon ligand exchange. Furthermore, the absorbance, photoluminescence (PL), and Fourier transform infrared spectra of the PbSe QDs revealed that the optical properties of the NQDs were retained during the surfactant exchange. High-resolution TEM images of the complete conjugated structure validate the presence of the coupling between the PbSe NQDs and the γ-Fe2O3 NPs. This unique system has substantial advantages for biological applications such as bio-sensing, detection of cancer cells, and drug delivery.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)6238-6244
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number17
StatePublished - 3 May 2007
Externally publishedYes


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