Santra Research Group

Quantum Dot Nanotechnology

Activatable Quantum Dot (Qdot) Probes for Bioimaging and Sensing Applications

Quantum dot-based intracellular reporter

In drug discovery research, quantification of the amount of anticancer drug delivered to live cancer cells is critical but highly challenging. More specifically this is of particular interest for evaluating therapeutic efficacy of any new drugs that enters into pre-clinical trials. We have successfully developed novel Qdot based activatable ("OFF"/"ON") probes and demonstrated successfully their efficacy for detecting intra-cellular drug release event. We are currently evaluating efficacy of the probes for quantifying the amount of drug released intra-cellularly via optical spectroscopy and microscopy. By design, these probes are imageable by MRI, X-Ray CT and Optical Tomography.

Funded by


  • Mitra, R. N.; Doshi, M.; Zhang, X. L.; Tyus, J. C.; Bengtsson, N.; Fletcher, S.; Page, B. D. G.; Turkson, J.; Gesquiere, A. J.; Gunning, P. T.; Walter, G. A.; Santra, S. , "An activatable multimodal/multifunctional nanoprobe for direct imaging of intracellular drug delivery." Biomaterials 2012, 33 (5), 1500-1508.
  • Malhotra A., Zhang X., Turkson J. and Santra, S. , "Buffer stable chitosan-polyglutamic acid hybrid nanoparticles for biomedical applications", Macromolecular Bioscience, 2013 (published online); DOI: 10.1002/mabi.201200425.
  • Patent awarded

    • US patent # 7,807,265
    • US patent # 8,128,908

Swadeshmukul Santra, Ph.D., University of Central Florida  •  Email:  •  Phone: 407-697-2848  •  Fax: 407-882-2819