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Schematic diagram of nanoparticles-loaded carbon capsules
The essential requirements for an imaging technique are high target specificity, 3-D tomography, real-time imaging, non-invasiveness, and high spatial resolution in which accurate and real-time imaging of biological targets is highly essential to understand the fundamental biological processes as well as to successfully diagnose various diseases. However, a single imaging technique cannot provide all the above and each techniques has its own merits and demerits. These issues can overcome by multimodal imaging methods which can compensate for the deficiencies of single imaging modalities. However, a separate contrast agent should be administered for every imaging method which can cause toxicity to the patients. To overcome these issues, it is urgent to develop a target specific contrast agent with multimodalities (e.g. magnetism and fluorescence). To this end, this proposal focuses on designing of a novel class of monodisperse, target specific multimodal nanoparticles-loaded (e.g. metal, magnetic, semiconductor, and lanthanide-doped nanoparticles) carbon nanocapsules for variety of bioimaging applications such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission tomography (PET), and optical imaging. Additionally, these nano particles loaded carbon capsules can have molecular functionality on their surfaces, such as catalytic centres, fluorescent markers, and DNA or organic ligands for biorecognition.