Near-Infrared-Emitting Hemicyanines and Their Photodynamic Killing of Cancer Cells

Mithun Santra, Matthew Owens, Gavin Birch, Mark Bradley*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A series of hemicyanine dyes was synthesized starting from the vinyl chloride-based cyanine dye IR-780. The dyes absorbed and emitted in the near-infrared region, while heavy atom (bromo and iodo) substitution promoted the generation of both singlet oxygen (1O2) as well as a range of other reactive oxygen-based species (ROS) upon irradiation at wavelengths greater than 610 nm. One hemicyanine dye displayed an outstanding singlet oxygen quantum efficiency (φΔ = 0.8) and was successfully applied in in vitro studies to mimic photodynamic therapy application.

Original languageEnglish
JournalACS Applied Bio Materials
Early online date29 Nov 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 29 Nov 2021


  • fluorescence
  • heavy atom
  • hemicyanines
  • near-infrared emitting
  • photodynamic therapy


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