Synthesis of a β-Arylethenesulfonyl Fluoride-Functionalized AIEgen for Activity-Based Urinary Trypsin Detection

Marie-Claire Giel, Shouxiang Zhang, Qi Hu, Dan Ding, Youhong Tang, Yuning Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Trypsin is one of the most important enzymes of the digestive system produced by the pancreatic acinar cells. Abnormal trypsin activity will affect pancreatic function, resulting in the corresponding pathological changes in the human body. Herein, we present a strategy based on the ensemble of a novel dual warhead probe HPC-ESF and the natural trypsin substrate bovine serum albumin (BSA) for the detection of trypsin activity including in real urine samples. The β-arylethenesulfonyl bearing HPC-ESF is nonemissive when dissolved in aqueous solution but becomes highly fluorescent upon conjugation to BSA through covalent bond formation with nucleophilic amino acids to create the HPC-ESF:BSA sensing system. The HPC-ESF:BSA complex can be hydrolyzed in the presence of trypsin, which results in a distinct fluorescence decrease in correlation with trypsin concentration and thus allows the detection of trypsin. Compared to previous methods, our covalent approach is simple to prepare and highly reliable. Our work will provide a different avenue for researchers to design fluorescent sensors based on a covalent labeling strategy, enriching the small library of functional groups available for such applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4321-4326
Number of pages6
JournalACS Applied Bio Materials
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 19 Sept 2022


  • 1,4-Michael addition
  • aggregation-induced emission
  • click chemistry
  • fluorescence probe
  • trypsin detection


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