Three-color fluorescence cross-correlation spectroscopy for analyzing complex nanoparticle mixture

Megan L Blades, Ekaterina Grekova, Holly M Wobma, Kun Chen, Warren CW Chan, David T Cramb

Anal. Chem. 2012, 84, 21, 9623–9631 | DOI: 10.1021/ac302572k


Further insight toward the complex association and dissociation events of macromolecules requires the development of a spectroscopic technique that can track individual components, or building blocks of these macromolecules, and the complexes which they form, in real time. Three-color fluorescence cross-correlation spectroscopy (3C-FCCS) has been shown to track assemblies of three spectrally labeled species in solution. Here, we clearly show that 3C-FCCS is capable of distinguishing beads barcoded with quantum dots from free quantum dots in the background despite the 800-to-1 difference in concentration of these two components. The validation of this spectroscopic technique in combination with the development of barcode labels would enable one to start to investigate complex association and dissociation kinetics of macromolecules and nanomaterials during the assembly process.