Designs and Applications of Multi-stimuli Responsive FRET Processes in AIEgen-Functionalized and Bi-fluorophoric Supramolecular Materials

Chia Hua Wu, Pham Quoc Nhien, Tu Thi Kim Cuc, Bui Thi Buu Hue, Hong Cheu Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Materials capable of displaying strong ratiometric fluorescence with Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) processes have attracted much research interest because of various chemosensor and biomedical applications. This review highlights several popular strategies in designing FRET-OFF/ON mechanisms of ratiometric fluorescence systems. In particular, the developments of organic and polymeric FRET materials featuring aggregation-induced emission-based luminogens (AIEgens), supramolecular assemblies, photochromic molecular switches and surfactant-induced AIE/FRET mechanisms are presented. AIEgens have been frequently employed as FRET donor and/or acceptor fluorophores to obtain enhanced ratiometric fluorescences in solution and solid states. Since AIE effects and FRET processes rely on controllable distances between fluorophores, many interesting fluorescent properties can be designed by regulating aggregation states in polymers and supramolecular systems. Photo-switchable fluorophores, such as spiropyran and diarylethene, provide drastic changes in fluorescence spectra upon photo-induced isomerizations, leading to photo-switching mechanisms to activate/deactivate FRET processes. Supramolecular assemblies offer versatile platforms to regulate responsive FRET processes effectively. In rotaxane structures, the donor-acceptor distance and FRET efficiency can be tuned by acid/base-controlled shuttling of the macrocycle component. The tunable supramolecular interactions are strongly influenced by external factors (such as pH values, temperatures, analytes, surfactants, UV-visible lights, etc.), which induce the assembly and disassembly of host-guest systems and thus their FRET-ON/FRET-OFF behavior. In addition, the changes in donor or acceptor fluorescence profiles upon detections of analytes can also sufficiently alter the FRET behavior and result in different ratiometric fluorescence outputs. The strategies and examples provided in this review offer the insights and toolkits for future FRET-based material developments. Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Article number2
JournalTopics in Current Chemistry
Volume381
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2023

Keywords

  • AIEgen·photo-switchable mechanism
  • FRET process
  • FRET pseudo-rotaxane
  • Supramolecular assembly
  • Surfactant-induced FRET

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