Diamentowy Grant

Project title: Design and synthesis of novel luminescent sensors and their photochemical investigation of potential suitability for selective and multifunctional application in molecular diagnostics

Principal investigator: mgr inż. Patryk Szymaszek

Obtained funds: 220 000 PLN

Project duration: Start day: 2020-10-14 – End day: 2024-10-13

Project cooperation:

  • Jagiellonian University, Department of Chemistry, Physicochemistry of Interfacial Phenomena Group
  • Jagiellonian University, Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutical Biochemistry
  • Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology in Warsaw

Short disctoption of the project:

The aim of the project is to design and synthesize a series of novel low-molecular-weight organic fluorescent sensors with diverse structures that will enable their application in molecular diagnostics and bioimaging, allowing for analysis of molecular and intracellular phenomena occurring in eukaryotic cell structures using fluorescence microscopy. An additional aim of the project is to obtain organic-inorganic luminescent complexes containing in their structure organic ligands based on the leading structures of the best prepared low molecular weight organic fluorescent dyes. Obtaining such a set of metal-organic molecular sensors ensures the development of a set of structurally diverse research tools that can be used in diagnostics and molecular imaging. The new systems will be characterized by high photo-stability, large Stokes shift, high luminescence quantum yield (especially in the red and infrared regions), water solubility, and high selectivity and sensitivity, as well as good matching of absorption characteristics to minimize cell auto-absorption. 

The obtained novel molecular luminescent sensors will be investigated for their photophysical properties including spectrophotometric and spectrofluorimetric studies in order to gain an in-depth understanding of the relationship between the structure of the obtained compounds and the obtained spectroscopic properties. Functionality studies will include spectroscopic analyses of interactions in fluorescent sensor ↔ protein (albumin) systems, determination of FRET parameters and the influence of interferents such as metal ions or pH variables. The selected sensors will be first subjected to mechanistic studies to determine how they penetrate cell membranes using Langmuir and Langmiur-Blodgett techniques, and then tested for their potential to visualize cell structures using intravital fluorescence microscopy, preceded by cytotoxicity studies.

Extensive research on the synthesis and optical properties of new luminescent sensors will provide the necessary guidelines for the design of a new generation of fluorescent dyes and luminescent sensors for applications in molecular biology, which will allow for their future use in bioimaging to analyze molecular and intracellular phenomena occurring in eukaryotic cell structures, as well as in medical diagnostics.