Optimized gold nanoshell ensembles for biomedical applications
© Sikdar et al.; licensee Springer. 2013
Received: 4 March 2013
Accepted: 16 March 2013
Published: 28 March 2013
We theoretically study the properties of the optimal size distribution in the ensemble of hollow gold nanoshells (HGNs) that exhibits the best performance at in vivo biomedical applications. For the first time, to the best of our knowledge, we analyze the dependence of the optimal geometric means of the nanoshells’ thicknesses and core radii on the excitation wavelength and the type of human tissue, while assuming lognormal fit to the size distribution in a real HGN ensemble. Regardless of the tissue type, short-wavelength, near-infrared lasers are found to be the most effective in both absorption- and scattering-based applications. We derive approximate analytical expressions enabling one to readily estimate the parameters of optimal distribution for which an HGN ensemble exhibits the maximum efficiency of absorption or scattering inside a human tissue irradiated by a near-infrared laser.
KeywordsHollow gold nanoshells Lognormal distribution Absorption Scattering Biomedical applications
The biocompatibility of gold nanoparticles, along with their tunable plasmon resonances and the ability to accumulate at targeted cancer sites, has proven them to be very effective agents for absorption-based photothermal therapy and scattering-based imaging applications [1–8]. Amongst the commonly used gold nanoparticles, silica-core gold nanoshells exhibit larger photothermal efficiency as compared to gold nanorods of equal number densities , whereas hollow gold nanoshells (HGNs) absorb light stronger than the silica-core gold nanoshells do [9, 10]. Furthermore, HGNs are comparatively less harmful to healthy tissues neighboring a cancer site , which makes them prospective for both photothermal and imaging applications. Although different tissue types and excitation wavelengths were analyzed before to determine the optimal dimensions of a nanoshell [10, 11], no optimization has ever been performed for a nanoshell ensemble with a real size distribution. In this Letter, we fill this gap by conducting the first theoretical study of the distribution parameters of the lognormally dispersed HGNs exhibiting peak absorption or scattering efficiency. In particular, we comprehensively analyze the dependence of these parameters on the excitation wavelength and optical properties of the tissue, giving clear design guidelines.
where x=r or h is the radius or thickness of the nanoshell, μ X = ln(Med[X]) and σ X are the mean and standard deviation of lnX, respectively, and Med[X] is the geometric mean of the random variable x=r or H.
where Q α (r,h) is expressed through Mie coefficients for a coated sphere [9, 22, 23], which are the functions of the excitation wavelength, refractive index of the tissue, and permittivities of the nanoshell constituents.
It is seen that the average absorption and scattering efficiencies of a nanoshell ensemble, excited at a fixed wavelength, are functions of the four parameters: Med[R], Med[H], σ R , and σ H . This poses the problem of finding, and studying the properties of, the optimal distribution parameters for which the nanoshell ensemble exhibits the maximum absorption or scattering efficiency.
Results and discussions
The effects of the excitation wavelength on the optimal distributions of the core radius and shell thickness are shown in Figures 1(c)– 1(f). Equal σ R and σ H (σ R =σ H =σ) correspond to the situation of similar (scalable) shapes of the two distributions. It is seen that the increase in the excitation wavelength shifts the optimal distribution f(r;μ R ,σ) towards larger radii for both absorption [Figure 1(c)] and scattering [Figure 1(e)]. This trend is opposite to the behavior of the optimal distributions f(h;μ H ,σ) in Figures 1(d) and 1(f), which shifts towards thinner shells with λ. Since the increase in Med[R] is larger than the reduction in Med[H], the optimal excitation of ensembles with larger HGNs require lower-frequency sources.
The parameters of the optimal lognormal distribution also vary with the type of human tissue. Figures 3(d)–3(f) show such variation for the entire span of refractive indices of human cancerous tissue [9, 19], λ=850 nm, and three typical shapes of the distribution. It is seen that the peak efficiencies of absorption and scattering by an HGN ensemble grow with n regardless of the shape parameter σ. The corresponding geometric mean of the core radii reduces with n and may be approximated as Med[R]≈n(−51σ2+87σ−65)+72σ2−136σ+147 for absorption, and as Med[R]≈n(−94σ2+142σ−87)+114σ2−179σ+178 for scattering. In contrast, the optimal geometric mean of the shell thicknesses is almost independent of n and approximated by the polynomial Med[H]≈2σ2−3σ+10 in the case of absorption, and as Med[H]≈26σ2−41σ+40 in the case of scattering. These expressions allow estimation (with an accuracy of about ±1 nm) of the optimal distribution parameters of an HGN ensemble excited at λ=850 nm for 0.1≤σ≤1 and 1.35≤n≤1.7. Numerical calculations show that the optimal dependencies Med[R](n) and Med[H](n) have almost constant slopes for 650 nm≤λ≤1000 nm. This feature allows one to use Figure 3 to roughly estimate the optimal lognormal distributions of HGNs to be delivered to any human tissue illuminated by a near-infrared laser.
In summary, we have studied the optimal distributions of lognormally dispersed hollow gold nanoshells for different excitation wavelengths and human tissues. Shorter-wavelength, near-infrared sources were found to be most effective for in vivo biomedical applications. The analytical expressions obtained may be used to estimate the optimal distribution of the nanoshells providing the maximum efficiency of their absorption or scattering of near-infrared radiation inside human tissue.
Hollow Gold Nanoshell
- Med[ X ] Median of the random variable X:
The work of D. Sikdar is supported by the Department of Business and Innovation of the Victorian Government, through its Victoria India Doctoral Scholarship Program (managed by the Australia India Institute). The work of I. D. Rukhlenko and M. Premaratne is supported by the Australian Research Council, through its Discovery Early Career Researcher Award DE120100055 and Discovery Grant scheme under Grant DP110100713, respectively. The work of W. Cheng is supported the Australian Research Council, through its Discovery Grant scheme under Grant DP120100170.
- Pattani VP, Tunnell JW: Nanoparticle-mediated photothermal therapy: A comparative study of heating for different particle types. Lasers Surg Med 2012, 44: 675—684.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Akiyama Y, Mori T, Katayama Y, Niidome T: Conversion of rod-shaped gold nanoparticles to spherical forms and their effect on biodistribution in tumor-bearing mice. Nanoscale Res Lett 2012, 7: 565. 10.1186/1556-276X-7-565View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Kennedy LC, Bear AS, Young JK, Lewinski NA, Kim J, Foster AE, Drezek RA: T cells enhance gold nanoparticle delivery to tumors in vivo. Nanoscale Res Lett 2011, 6: 283. 10.1186/1556-276X-6-283View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Huang X, El-Sayed MA: Plasmonic photo-thermal therapy (PPTT). Alex J Med 2011, 47: 1–9. 10.1016/j.ajme.2011.01.001View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Liu L, Guo Z, Xu L, Xu R, Lu X: Facile purification of colloidal NIR-responsive gold nanorods using ions assisted self-assembly. Nanoscale Res Lett 2011, 6: 143. 10.1186/1556-276X-6-143View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Verma VC, Singh SK, Solanki R, Prakash S: Biofabrication of anisotropic gold nanotriangles using extract of endophytic Aspergillus clavatus as a dual functional reductant and stabilizer. Nanoscale Res Lett 2011, 6: 16.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Chen Y, Hung Y, Liau I, Huang GS: Assessment of the in vivo toxicity of gold nanoparticles. Nanoscale Res Lett 2009, 4: 858–864. 10.1007/s11671-009-9334-6View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Jain PK, Lee KS, El-Sayed IH, El-Sayed MA: Calculated absorption and scattering properties of gold nanoparticles of different size, shape, and composition: Applications in biological imaging and biomedicine. J Phys Chem B 2006, 110: 7238–7248. 10.1021/jp057170oView ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Sikdar D, Rukhlenko ID, Cheng W, Premaratne M: Effect of number density on optimal design of gold nanoshells for plasmonic photothermal therapy. Biom Opt Express 2013, 4: 15–31. 10.1364/BOE.4.000015View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Kessentini S, Barchiesi D: Quantitative comparison of optimized nanorods, nanoshells and hollow nanospheres for photothermal therapy. Biom Opt Express 2012, 3: 590–604. 10.1364/BOE.3.000590View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Grosges T, Barchiesi D, Kessentini S, Grehan G, de la Chapelle ML: Nanoshells for photothermal therapy: A Monte-Carlo based numerical study of their design tolerance. Biom Opt Express 2011, 2: 1584–1596. 10.1364/BOE.2.001584View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- López-Muñoz GA, Pescador-Rojas JA, Ortega-Lopez J, Salazar JS, Balderas-López JA: Thermal diffusivity measurement of spherical gold nanofluids of different sizes/concentrations. Nanoscale Res Lett 2012, 7: 423. 10.1186/1556-276X-7-423View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Tengen TB: Designing nanomaterials with desired mechanical properties by constraining the evolution of their grain shapes. Nanoscale Res Lett 2011, 6: 585. 10.1186/1556-276X-6-585View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Amendola V, Meneghetti M: Size evaluation of gold nanoparticles by UV vis spectroscopy. J Phys Chem C 2009, 113: 4277–4285. 10.1021/jp8082425View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Wu G, Mikhailovsky A, A KH, A ZJ: Synthesis, characterization, and optical response of gold nanoshells used to trigger release from liposomes. Methods Enzymology 2009, 464: 279–307.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Crow EL, Shimizu K: Lognormal distributions: Theory and applications. New York: M. Dekker; 1988.Google Scholar
- Kah JCY, Chow TH, Ng BK, Razul SG, Olivo M, Sheppard CJR: Concentration dependence of gold nanoshells on the enhancement of optical coherence tomography images: a quantitative study. Appl Opt 2009, 48: D96-D108. 10.1364/AO.48.000D96View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Handapangoda CC, Premaratne M, Paganin DM, Hendahewa PRDS: Technique for handling wave propagation specific effects in biological tissue: Mapping of the photon transport equation to maxwell’s equations. Opt Express 2008, 16: 17792–17807. 10.1364/OE.16.017792View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Vo-Dinh T: Biomedical Photonics Handbook. CRC, Boca Raton: Florida; 2003.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Rubinov AN, Afanas’ev AA: Nonresonance mechanisms of biological effects of coherent and incoherent light. Opt Spectrosc 2005, 98: 943–948. 10.1134/1.1953991View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Yu G: Near-infrared diffuse correlation spectroscopy in cancer diagnosis and therapy monitoring. J Biom Opt 2012, 17: 010901–010911. 10.1117/1.JBO.17.1.010901View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Tang Y, Vlahovic B: Metallic nano-particles for trapping light. Nanoscale Res Lett 2013, 8: 65. 10.1186/1556-276X-8-65View ArticleGoogle Scholar
- Bohren CF, Huffman DR: Absorption and scattering of light by small particles. New York: Wiley; 1998.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.