Luminescence switch-on assay of interferon-gamma using a G-quadruplex-selective iridium(III) complex

Sheng Lin, Bingyong He, Chao Yang, Chung Hang Leung*, Jean Louis Mergny*, Edmond Dik Lung Ma*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


In this study, we synthesized a series of 9 luminescent iridium(iii) complexes and studied their ability to function as luminescent probes for G-quadruplex DNA. The iridium(iii) complex 8 [Ir(pbtz)2(dtbpy)]PF6 (where pbtz = 2-phenylbenzo[d]thiazole; dtbpy = 4,4′-di-tert-butyl-2,2′-bipyridine) showed high selectivity for G-quadruplex DNA over single-stranded and double-stranded DNA, and was subsequently utilized for the development of a label-free oligonucleotide-based assay for interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), an important biomarker for a range of immune and infectious diseases, in aqueous solution. We further demonstrated that this assay could monitor IFN-γ levels even in the presence of cellular debris. This assay represents the first G-quadruplex-based assay for IFN-γ detection described in the literature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16033-16036
Number of pages4
JournalChemical Communications
Issue number89
Early online date14 Sept 2015
Publication statusPublished - 18 Nov 2015

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Catalysis
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Materials Chemistry


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