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A Versatile AuNP Synthetic Platform for Decoupled Control of Size and Surface Composition

submitted on 31.01.2018, 22:40 and posted on 01.02.2018, 16:06 by Ye Yang, Luis A. Serrano, Stefan Guldin
While a plethora of protocols exist for the synthesis of sub-10 nm gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), the independent control over size and surface composition remains restricted. This poses a particular challenge for systematic studies of AuNP structure-function relationships and optimization of crucial design parameters. To this end, we report on a modular 2-step approach based on the synthesis of AuNPs in oleylamine (OAm) followed by the subsequent functionalization with target thiol ligands. The synthesis of OAm-capped AuNPs enables fine tuning of the core size in the range of 2–7nm by varying the reaction temperature. The subsequent thiol-for-OAm ligand-exchange allows a reliable generation of thiol-capped AuNPs with target surface functionality. The compatibility of this approach with a vast library of thiol ligands provides detailed control of mixed ligand composition and solubility in a wide range of solvents ranging from water to hexane. This decoupled control over the AuNP core and ligand shell provides a powerful toolbox for the methodical screening of optimal design parameters and facile preparation of AuNPs with target properties.


EU H2020 No 633635 (DIACHEMO)


Email Address of Submitting Author


University College London


United Kingdom

ORCID For Submitting Author


Declaration of Conflict of Interest

No conflict to declare