Nanodiamonds (NDs) with color centers are excellent emitters for various bioimaging and quantum biosensing applications. In our work, we explored new applications of NDs with silicon-vacancy centers (SiV) obtained by high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) synthesis based on metal-catalyst-free growth. They are coated with a polypeptide biopolymer which is essential for efficient cellular uptake. The unique optical properties of NDs with SiV are their high photostability and narrow emission in the near-infrared region. Our results demonstrate for the first time that NDs with SiV allow live-cell dual-color imaging and intracellular tracking. Also, intracellular thermometry as well as challenges associated with SiV atomic defects in NDs are investigated and discussed for the first time. NDs with SiV nanoemitters provide new avenues for live-cell bioimaging, diagnostic (SiV as a nanosized thermometer), and theranostic (nanodiamonds as drug carrier) applications.
We have tested the inhomogeneity of nanodiamonds with Silicon-Vacancy for thermometry and have demonstrated intracellular thermometry in fixed and living cells with Silicon-Vacancy centers in nanodiamonds.
Liu 2021 SI 2