10:30am - 11:00amInvited
Molecular Optical Materials: The Amorphous State and Phase Change Systems
University of Hyderabad, India
The emergence and relevance of functional molecular materials and the basic paradigm of the molecules-to-materials transition form the background of this presentation. The form and functions of these materials are determined by the non-covalent interactions that lead to their assembly; the contrasting scenario between small molecule and macromolecule based materials in terms of the crystalline and amorphous modes of assembly raises fundamental questions. Diaminodicyanoquinodimethanes (DADQs) form one class of molecules that exhibit strongly enhanced fluorescence emission in the solid state, and provide insight into the critical role of oriented aggregation in this phenomenon. The amorphous ® crystalline transformation of DADQ based ultrathin films and nanoparticles confined in polymer thin films, as well as the utilisation of crystallinity as a parameter to tune the fluorescence emission, illustrate a new direction in the hierarchical assembly of molecular materials. The realization of thermally-induced reversible amorphous « crystalline transformation accompanied by a prominent switching of the fluorescence response in novel DADQ derivatives marks an entry into the new domain of functional molecular phase change materials.
We thank the DST and the UGC, New Delhi for financial support, and the Central Facility for Nanotechnology and the School of Chemistry, University of Hyderabad for infrastructure support.
 Radhakrishnan, T. P. Acc. Chem. Res. 2008, 41, 367.
 Srujana, P; Radhakrishnan, T. P. J. Mater. Chem. C 2016, 4, 6510.
 Chandaluri, C. G.; Radhakrishnan, T. P. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2012, 51, 11849.
 Chandaluri, C. G.; Radhakrishnan, T. P. J. Mater. Chem. C 2013, 1, 4464.
 Srujana, P.; Radhakrishnan, T. P. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2015, 54, 7270.
11:00am - 11:30amInvited
Plasmonic Biosensors Powered by Hydrogel Nanostructures
1AIT-Austrian Institute of Technology, Austria; 2University of Siegen, Germany
The coupling of light to strongly confined electromagnetic field of surface plasmons allows for sensitive probing of chemical and biological species. Such confinement is associated with extreme enhancement of electromagnetic field intensity at metallic films and metallic nanoparticles. Hydrogels formed by crosslinked polymer networks are excellently suited to serve at the interface of such plasmonic nanostructures that are tailored for detection of molecular analytes based on various modalities including surface plasmon resonance and plasmonically enhanced fluorescence  or Raman spectroscopy. They can be tethered to their surface in order to provide antifouling properties and efficient means to immobilize large amounts of ligands specific for target analyte . This paper reports on plasmonic materials that combine metallic and responsive photo-crosslinkable hydrogel nanostructures and that are prepared by combination of UV laser interference lithography and template stripping. Active control of plasmonic modes at gold nanoparticle and nanohole arrays attached to a transparent substrate by responsive hydrogel cushion will be demonstrated. Strategies for local functionalization of plasmonic hotspot with ligands including protein and peptides will be discussed. Implementation of developed hybrid materials for detection of trace amounts of biomarkers in complex samples will be presented.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 633937 (project ULTRAPLACAD) and No 642787 (Marie Sklodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network BIOGEL).
 M. Bauch, K. Toma, M. Toma, Q. Zhang, J. Dostalek, Surface plasmon-enhanced fluorescence biosensors: a review, Plasmonics (2014), 9 (4), 781-799.
 A. Mateescu, Y. Wang, J. Dostalek, U. Jonas, Thin Hydrogel Films for Optical Biosensor Applications, Membranes, (2012), 2(1), 40-69.
11:30am - 11:45amOral
Microscale Patterns of Nanorod-Liquid Crystal Polymer Composites by Photo-Induced Alignment
1City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong S.A.R. (China); 2Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong S.A.R. (China)
Compared to spherical semiconductor nanocrystals (QDs), anisotropic rod-shaped nanocrystals introduce a number of benefits, such as larger extinction coefficients and the absorption and emission of linearly polarized light. To retain these benefits in films, parallel ordering of the nanorods is necessary and has been reported by a number of different approaches. In earlier work, we developed the alignment of nanorod/liquid crystal polymer composites by photo-alignment technology, which provides high alignment quality, shown by the high order parameters and the large degree of polarization of the emitted light. Based on the reorientation mechanism of the sulfonic azo dye molecules, photoalignment technology offers high anchoring energies with a zero pre-tilt angle, and exceptional control over the local director of liquid crystals. In this regard, we explore the advantages of the method towards fabrication of precise micro-patterns of light-emitting CdSe/CdS semiconductor nanorods, dispersed in liquid crystal polymer. After unidirectional alignment of the composite thin films, with polarized UV light, we obtain one- and two-dimensional fluorescent gratings by a second irradiation, and the employment of a photomask. Analysis by fluorescence mircoscopy confirms, that we are able to control the nanorod alignment in domain sizes down to 2 μm. Furthermore, we present the azimuthal sensitivity of such patterns, based on the emission and absorption anisotropy. Apart from addressing the fundamental interest to precisely control the orientation of nano-sized objects, we introduce the concept of semiconductor nanorod-based fluorescent gratings, which hold great promise for applications in optoelectronic devices.
 Du Tao, Julian Schneider, Abhishek K. Srivastava, Andrei S. Susha, Vladimir G. Chigrinov, Hoi S. Kwok, Andrey L. Rogach, Combination of Photo-induced Alignment and Self-Assembly to Realize Polarized Emission from Ordered Semiconductor Nanorods, ACS Nano 9, 11049 (2015).
11:45am - 12:00pmOral
Functionalized Magnetic Nanocubes for Selective Isolation of Mesenchymal Transitioned NSCLC Circulating Tumor Cells
University of Missouri, United States
Recent studies have shown that “liquid biopsy” is an attractive and alternative method to isolate either Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) or ctDNA as it provides an opportunity to perform whole genome sequencing and understand the depth of tumor spread. FDA approved “Cell search” kit and other technologies largely utilize epithelial maker present on the surface of tumor for isolation of CTCs. Frequent changes in cancer signaling, acquired mutations during treatment leading to drug resistance and the oncogenic biochemical modifications are often associated with metastases that involve upregulation of epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) pathway that change the elasticity of tumor cells for easy shedding into the blood stream. Thus, EMT transition leads to depletion in epithelial markers such as EpCAM and cytokeratin that are to be targeted. We hypothesized that these cells can be captured by targeting surface markers that are overexpressed in EM transitioned CTCs.
NSCLC is the most aggressive form of cancer that is driven by several oncogenic mutations and CTCs are less frequently observed when detected by current technologies that use EPCAM based methods. In this study, we have shown that EGFR and HER2 receptors are overexpressed in KRAS and EGFR mutated NSCLC cells and these can be selectively captured using these biomarkers. We artificially activated EMT in NSCLC cells and compared the surface biomarker concentrations with epithelial cells. The biomarkers on EMT cells were validated by standard western blot analysis. Based on the biomarkers, we designed and developed Magnetic Nanocubes (MNC) surface functionalized with these biomarkers to capture EMT CTCs. The efficacy of MNCs to capture EMT CTCs was compared in multiple NSCLC cell lines. Overall, we could achieve capture as low as 10 spiked cells. In summary, we have developed a procedure for selective capture EMT CTCs that presents a real-time monitoring of patients.