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Melamine-Induced Decomposition and Anti-FRET Effect from a Self-Assembled Complex of Rhodamine 6G and DNA-Stabilized Silver Nanoclusters Used for Dual-Emitting Ratiometric and Naked-Eye-Visible Fluorescence Detection

Fu, Yongxin, Jin, Hui, Bu, Xiangning, Gui, Rijun
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2018 v.66 no.37 pp. 9819-9827
DNA, aqueous solutions, borohydrides, fluorescence, melamine, nanosilver, reducing agents, rhodamines, stabilizers
In this work, blue-emitting silver nanoclusters (AgNCs) were prepared in a matrix of single-stranded deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) on the basis of ambient hydrothermal reactions. DNA acted as the stabilizer or coating agent, and NaBH₄ was used as the reducing agent. Through the interactions between rhodamine 6G (Rh6G) and the synthesized DNA-AgNCs, the self-assembled complex of DNA-AgNC–Rh6G was generated. Meanwhile, fluorescence emission of AgNCs was weakened as a result of fluorescence-resonance-energy transfer (FRET) from AgNCs (donor) to Rh6G (acceptor). In the DNA-AgNC–Rh6G complex aqueous suspension, the addition of melamine induced obvious emission recovery of AgNCs and fluorescence decrease of Rh6G, attributable to melamine-induced decomposition of the self-assembled complex and anti-FRET effects. There was a well-plotted linear relationship of ratiometric fluorescence intensities (IAgNCₛ/IRₕ₆G) versus melamine concentration in the range of 0.1–10 μM, with a low detection limit of 25 nM. Responses of IAgNCₛ/IRₕ₆G to melamine were highly selective and sensitive over potential interferents. A novel dual-emitting ratiometric fluorescence sensor of melamine was facilely constructed on the basis of the DNA-AgNC–Rh6G complex. In particular, the sensor enabled visual fluorescence detection of melamine both in aqueous solution and on wetted filter paper. Superior detection results of the sensor were experimentally obtained and confirmed its high feasibility for melamine detection in practical samples.