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Molecular Engineering for Boosting AIE-active Free Radical Photogenerator and Its High-performance in Hypoxia via Photodynamic Therapy

preprint
submitted on 09.02.2020 and posted on 10.02.2020 by Qing Wan, Rongyuan Zhang, Zeyan Zhuang, Yuxuan Li, Zhiming Wang, Weijie Zhang, Jianquan Hou, Ben Zhong Tang

Serious hypoxia in solid tumor as well as vicious aggregation-caused fluorescence quenching (ACQ) of conventional photosensitizers (PSs) limit the progress of the fluorescence imaging-guided photodynamic (PDT) although it has obvious advantages in precise spatial-temporal control and noninvasive treatment. The photosensitizers featuring Type I reactive oxygen species (ROS) based on free radical and novel aggregation-induced emission (AIE) characteristic (AIE-PSs) could offer precious opportunity to resolve above problems, but there was rare feasible molecular engineering in previous reports. Herein, we proposed that the strategy of fabricating stronger intermolecular charge transfer (ICT) effect in electron-rich anion-π+ AIE-active luminogens (AIEgens) aimed to help suppressing nonradiative internal conversion (IC) as well as promote radiative and intersystem crossing (ISC) processes for boosting more free radical generation. Systematic and detailed experimental and theoretical calculations proved our ideas when the electron-donating abilities enhanced in collaborative donors, and the AIE-PSs exhibited higher performance in near-infrared red (NIR) fluorescence image-guided cancer PDT in vitro/vivo. This work would become an important reference to the design of AIE-active free radical generators for overcoming ACQ effect and tumor hypoxia in future PDT.

History

Email Address of Submitting Author

wangzhiming@scut.edu.cn

Institution

South China University of Technology

Country

China

ORCID For Submitting Author

0000-0002-3047-3285

Declaration of Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no competing financial interest

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