To more accurately assess the pathways of biological systems, a probe is needed that may respond selectively to adenosine triphosphate (ATP) for both in vitro and in vivo detection modes. We have developed a luminescence probe that can provide real-time information on the extent of ATP, ADP, and AMP by virtue of the luminescence and luminescence lifetime observed from a supramolecular polymer based on a C3 symmetrical terpyridine complex with Tb3+ (S1-Tb). The probe shows remarkable selective luminescence enhancement in the presence of ATP compared to other phosphate-displaying nucleotides including adenosine diphosphate (ADP), adenosine monophosphate (AMP), guanosine triphosphate (GTP), thymidine triphosphate (TTP), H2PO4-(Pi), and pyrophosphate (PPi). In addition, the time-resolved luminescence lifetime and luminescence spectrum of S1-Tb could facilitate the quantitative measurement of the exact amount of ATP and similarly ADP and AMP within living cells. The time-resolved luminescence lifetime of S1-Tb could also be used to quantitatively monitor the amount of ATP, ADP, and AMP in vitro following the enzymatic hydrolysis of ATP. The long luminescence lifetime, which was observed into the millisecond range, makes this S1-Tb-based probe particularly attractive for monitoring biological ATP levels in vivo, because any short lifetime background fluorescence arising from the complex molecular environment may be easily eliminated.
- Adenosine triphosphate (ATP)
- Supramolecular polymer