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A NBD-based simple but effective fluorescent pH probe for imaging of lysosomes in living cells

Cao, Xiang-Jian, Chen, Li-Na, Zhang, Xuan, Liu, Jin-Ting, Chen, Ming-Yu, Wu, Qiu-Rong, Miao, Jun-Ying, Zhao, Bao-Xiang
Analytica chimica acta 2016 v.920 pp. 86-93
X-ray diffraction, analytical chemistry, electron transfer, fluorescence, image analysis, lysosomes, morpholine, pH, ultraviolet radiation
NBDlyso with lysosome-locating morpholine moiety has been developed as a high selective and sensitive fluorescent pH probe. This probe can respond to acidic pH (2.0–7.0) in a short time (less than 1 min) and not almost change after continuously illuminated for an extended period by ultraviolet light. The fluorescence intensity of NBDlyso enhanced 100-fold in acidic solution, with very good linear relationship (R2 = 0.996). The pKa of probe NBDlyso is 4.10. Therefore, NBDlyso was used to detect lysosomal pH changes successfully. Besides, X-ray crystallography was used to verify the structure of NBDlyso, and the recognition mechanism involving photo-induced electron transfer was interpreted theoretically by means of DFT and TDDFT calculations skillfully when NBDlyso comes into play under the acidic condition. This probe showed good ability to sense pH change in living cell image.