24 February 2009 Modulated or alternating excitation in fluorescence correlation spectroscopy
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We have previously shown that formation of triplet states and other photo-induced states can be controlled by modulating the excitation with pulse widths and periods in the range of the transition times of the involved states. However, modulating the excitation in fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) measurements normally destroys correlation information and induces ringing in the correlation curve. We have introduced and experimentally verified a method to retrieve the full correlation curves from FCS measurements with modulated excitation and arbitrarily low fraction of active excitation. Modulated excitation applied to FCS experiments was shown to suppress the triplet build-up more efficiently than reducing excitation power with continuous wave excitation. The usefulness of the method was demonstrated by measurements done on fluorescein at different pH, where suppression of the triplet significantly facilitates the analysis of the protonation kinetics. Using a fluorophore where the protonation-coupled fluorescence intensity fluctuations are due to spectral shifts, introduction of two-color alternating excitation and spectral crosscorrelation can turn the protonation component of the correlation curve into an anti-correlation and further facilitate the distinction of this component from those of other processes.
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Gustav Persson, Tor Sandén, Per Thyberg, Jerker Widengren, "Modulated or alternating excitation in fluorescence correlation spectroscopy", Proc. SPIE 7185, Single Molecule Spectroscopy and Imaging II, 718509 (24 February 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.808912; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.808912

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