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      A 200-fold Quantum Yield Boost in the Photoluminescence of Silver-Doped AgxAu25−xNanoclusters: The 13 th Silver Atom Matters

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          Recent advances in the chemistry of lanthanide-doped upconversion nanocrystals.

          Lanthanide ions exhibit unique luminescent properties, including the ability to convert near infrared long-wavelength excitation radiation into shorter visible wavelengths through a process known as photon upconversion. In recent years lanthanide-doped upconversion nanocrystals have been developed as a new class of luminescent optical labels that have become promising alternatives to organic fluorophores and quantum dots for applications in biological assays and medical imaging. These techniques offer low autofluorescence background, large anti-Stokes shifts, sharp emission bandwidths, high resistance to photobleaching, and high penetration depth and temporal resolution. Such techniques also show potential for improving the selectivity and sensitivity of conventional methods. They also pave the way for high throughput screening and miniaturization. This tutorial review focuses on the recent development of various synthetic approaches and possibilities for chemical tuning of upconversion properties, as well as giving an overview of biological applications of these luminescent nanocrystals.
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            Protein-directed synthesis of highly fluorescent gold nanoclusters.

            A simple, one-pot, "green" synthetic route, based on the "biomineralization" capability of a common commercially available protein, bovine serum albumin (BSA), has been developed for the preparation of highly stable Au nanocrystals (NCs) with red emission and high quantum yield.
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              On the ligand's role in the fluorescence of gold nanoclusters.

              The fluorescence of metal nanoparticles (such as gold and silver) has long been an intriguing topic and has drawn considerable research interest. However, the origin of fluorescence still remains unclear. In this work, on the basis of atomically monodisperse, 25-atom gold nanoclusters we present some interesting results on the fluorescence from [Au(25)(SR)(18)](q) (where q is the charge state of the particle), which has shed some light on this issue. Our work explicitly shows that the surface ligands (-SR) play a major role in enhancing the fluorescence of gold nanoparticles. Specifically, the surface ligands can influence the fluorescence in two different ways: (i) charge transfer from the ligands to the metal nanoparticle core (i.e., LMNCT) through the Au-S bonds, and (ii) direct donation of delocalized electrons of electron-rich atoms or groups of the ligands to the metal core. Following these two mechanisms, we have demonstrated strategies to enhance the fluorescence of thiolate ligand-protected gold nanoparticles. This work is hoped to stimulate more experimental and theoretical research on the atomic level design of luminescent metal nanoparticles for promising optoelectronic and other applications.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Angewandte Chemie International Edition
                Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.
                Wiley-Blackwell
                14337851
                February 24 2014
                February 24 2014
                : 53
                : 9
                : 2376-2380
                Article
                10.1002/anie.201307480
                af7b927a-9cc0-4de4-925a-126901edc329
                © 2014

                http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/tdm_license_1.1

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