Ligand Passivated Gold Nanoparticles

Novel method for the synthesis of kinetically stable novel ligand passivated gold nanoclusters

At a Glance

Researchers at Colorado State University have developed several novel gold nanoclusters and methods for their synthesis.  The unique synthesis produces kinetically stabilized novel gold nanoclusters, in addition to a series of ligand passivated gold nanoclusters that display remarkable physical properties.

Monolayer protected thioloated gold nanoclusters are stable metal nanoparticles that are passivated by a layer of organic material.  Most known syntheses of these gold nanoclusters result in products that have noble-gas-like superatomic electron configuration, such as Au25(SR)18- and Au102(SR)44.  The gold nanoclusters that correspond to the closed-shell configuration are the results of thermodynamic stabilization.


  • Ease of reproducibility
  • Scalable from total reaction volumes of µL to mL or more
  • Very fast reaction (takes on average 2% of traditional AuNC syntheses, 1 h vs 48 h)
  • Reaction does not require a “focusing period” (standard methods typically require multiple days)
  • Can be performed at room temperature
  • Provides for new, kinetically-stable compounds not yet previously known
  • High yield (relatively uncommon in this field)


  • Catalysis

  • Optics

  • Fluoresecent probes

  • Theranostics

  • Diagnostics

  • MRI/CT contrast agents

  • Genomics and Biosensorics

  • Immunoassays and clinical chemistry

  • Photothermolysis of cancer cells and tumors

  • Targeted delivery of drugs and antigens

  • Optical bioimaging of cells and tissues

  • Toxic molecule detection

  • Biolabeling

Last Updated: April 2022

Available for Licensing

IP Status

US Utility Patent: US 9683992


William Compel
Christopher Ackerson
On Lo Andrea Wong

Reference Number
Licensing Manager

Steve Foster