In this work we demonstrate the potential use of gold nanoparticles as contrast agents for the optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging technique in dentistry. Here, a new in situ photothermal reduction procedure was developed, producing spherical gold nanoparticles inside dentinal layers and tubules. Gold ions were dispersed in the primer of commercially available dental bonding systems. After the application and permeation in dentin by the modified adhesive systems, the dental bonding materials were photopolymerized concurrently with the formation of gold nanoparticles. The gold nanoparticles were visualized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The SEM images show the presence of gold nanospheres in the hybrid layer and dentinal tubules. The diameter of the gold nanoparticles was determined to be in the range of 40 to 120 nm. Optical coherence tomography images were obtained in two- and three-dimensions. The distribution of nanoparticles was analyzed and the extended depth of nanosphere production was determined. The results show that the OCT technique, using in situ formed gold nanoparticles as contrast enhancers, can be used to visualize dentin structures in a non-invasive and non-destructive way.
Various problems arising during molecular imaging of different fluoroprobes and metabolites used in PDT can be
circumvented by focusing on multifunctional therapy agents. Thus an effective photo sensitizer coupled with other
useful roles to play in PDT treatment make nanoparticles as a good vehicle for different delivery assuming
multifunctional roles not only in PDT but also as therapeutic agents for targeted delivery. A new approach is the
involving use of 100 nm NPs as photo sensitizers and/or imaging agents. In our Lab., we employ two such NPs and are
ORMOSIL (organically Modified Silica) and PAA (Polyacrylamide) which are found to be biologically very safe
without disturbing the therapeutic value. The size of the nanoparticles determined by TEM and Dynamic Light
Scattering are ~30 nm. These NPs are taken up in conjunction with cyanine dye at near infra red as it has been reported
in literature that encapsulated NPs shows very low singlet oxygen production compared with the post-loaded NPs though
the reasons are not yet clear. Therefore, we investigated the idea of post-loading or adsorbing vis-a-vis encapsulation.
Laser tweezer trapping technology has been applied to monitor the bulk local solution viscosity during the sol-gel gelation process. The gelation rate is the same in depth ranges 2 - 20 microns from the bounding surface. Simultaneously with the laser tweezer study, a micro-viscosity kinetic measurement of the sol-gel process was performed using fluorescent anisotropy and quantum yield measurements. The differences between the bulk- and micro-viscosities obtained in the experiment reflect the intrinsic differences in solution environment sensed by the laser tweezer on the macro level and by other optical techniques within the probe microscopic environment.