We describe the synthesis, properties, and application of a new fluorescent potassium chemosensor, KS2, for K+ sensing and imaging in live cells. By virtue of a strong electron-withdrawing group, 2-dicyanomethylene-3- cyano-4,5,5-trimethyl-2,5-dihydrofuran (TCF), with a triazacryptand ligand, the new sensor can respond to K+ up to 1.6 M. This is the first highly selective intracellular sensor suitable for sensing K+ over a broad and high concentration range. Confocal fluorescence microscopy has established the utility of KS2 for live-cell K+ detection. The application of KS2 combined with other sensors will be of great benefit for investigating cellular metabolism, detecting and diagnosing diseases including cancer, and monitoring responses to therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry