Probing specific DNA sequences with luminescent semiconductor quantum dots

J. Taylor, Shuming Nie

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The development of new fluorescent probes has impacted many areas of research such as medical diagnostics, high-speed drug screening, and basic molecular biology. Main limitations to traditional organic fluorophores are their relatively weak intensities, short life times (eg., photobleaching), and broad emission spectra. The desire for more intense fluorescent probes with higher photostability and narrow emission wavelengths has led to the development and utilization of semiconductor quantum dots as a new label. In this work, we have modified semiconductor quantum dots (QD's) with synthetic oligonucleotides to probe a specific DNA target sequence both in solution as well as immobilized on a solid substrate. In the first approach, specific target sequences are detected in solution by using short oligonucleotide probes, which are covalently linked to semiconductor quantum dots. In the second approach, DNA target sequences are covalently attached to a glass substrate and detected using oligonucleotides linked to semiconductor quantum dots.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)16-24
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes
EventNanoparticles and Nanostrutured Surfaces: Novel Reporters with Biological Applications - San Jose, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 24 2001Jan 25 2001


  • DNA
  • Fluorescence
  • Hybridization
  • Quantum dots

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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