First-of-a-kind solution for utilizing photon upconversion -- MEDICA - World Forum for Medicine


Labrox Ltd

First-of-a-kind solution for utilizing photon upconversion

TURKU, Finland, /PRNewswire/ --

Novel detection technology is finally breaking through in the life science field

The life science field has seen numerous detection technologies come and go over the years. Some are shooting stars and others become the golden standard. Photon upconversion is a novel detection technology that has raised much enthusiasm among researchers during recent years. Now, finally, this technology is becoming commercially available. With their unique advantages, upconverting nanoparticle labels (UCNPs) have the potential to become a real success story.

Comprehensive system for life science companies and academic research groups

Around the world, research groups have eagerly studied the technology and published proofs-of-concept for numerous applications and analytes. Wider use has been limited by the lack of commercial detection instrumentation and supplier of upconverting nanomaterial. Now two Finnish life science companies, Kaivogen Oy and Labrox Oy, are launching an Upcon™ Upconverting nanoparticle system. It is a comprehensive concept providing both the UCNP labels and the first commercial microplate reader dedicated to be used with the UCNPs.

Bright and photostable particles for low-background applications

The key to the Upcon™ technology is the small (Ø ~35 nm) upconverting nanoparticles. These inorganic nanocrystals provide several advantages over the traditional fluorophores. UCNPs convert near-infrared (NIR) radiation to visible light via a unique process that enables the photoluminescence to be measured entirely free of autofluorescence and scattered excitation light. Furthermore, UCNPs are doped with lanthanide ions that provide the favorable properties of stable emission, discrete emission bands and long emission lifetime (µs-ms). These characteristics make the technology very compelling for applications like imaging and quantitative lateral flow assays. UCNPs are also applicable to bioaffinity assays, sensors, and even therapy. The simple and robust instrumentation makes the technology suitable for POC applications.

Rise and shine

"It has been exciting to see the rise of this technology with its exceptional advantages from its early stages to the point where it is finally becoming available for all," says Tero Soukka, a professor at the University of Turku, Department of Biotechnology. He has been involved in developing the UCNP-based technology for almost a decade. Back then the technology was just taking its first steps. Now Upcon™ promises to take the leap to market by offering high sensitivity and great performance where it is needed.


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