BRG Functional Materials

Biophotonics & Bioimaging

Photophysics & Photochemistry


High-density Optical Data Storage

Functional Materials

Supramolecular Photonic Materials

One of our aims is to fully understand the basic tenets for the design of materials that will undergo multiphoton absorption. In short, we aim to investigate intermolecular electronic coupling and its effect on multiphoton absorption. These efforts were recognized in 2008 with a four-year $1.8 million Collaborative Research in Chemistry grant from the National Science Foundation (CHE-0832622, PI: Belfield). We are investigating a number of means to create self-assembled supramolecular photonic materials, including polymer, carbon nanotube, and liquid crystal templating.

Polymeric Materials for Biomedical Applications

Biopolymer Research at NJIT

Light weight, high strength ploymers and plastics are gaining increased importance in a number of medical applications, such as artificial joints, cardiovascular implants, opthamological vision correction, probes for bioimaging, surgical aids, and tissue scaffolds. Our research lab has been part of a multidisciplinary effort involving chemists, materials scientists, and mechanical engineers. With sponsorship from the Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering of the National Institute of Health, we developed functional block copolymer probes for two-photon based deep tissue tumor and angiogenesis imaging.


  1. Ghazvini Zadeh, E. H.; Woodward, A. W.; Richardson, D.; Bondar, M. V.; Belfield, K. D. “Stimuli-Responsive Cyclopenta[ef]heptalenes: Synthesis and Optical Properties” European Journal of Organic Chemistry 2015, 2271-2276.

  2. Irfan, M.; Belfield, K. D.; Saeed, A. “Carbazole/Fluorene Based Conjugated Small Molecules: Synthesis and Comparative Studies on the Optical, Thermal and Electrochemical Properties” RSC Advances 2015, 5, in press.

  3. Ali, M.; Kim, B; Belfield, K. D.; Norman, D.; Brennan, M.; Ali, G. S. “Inhibition of Phytophthora parasitica and P. capsici by Silver Nanoparticles Synthesized using Aqueous Extract of Artemisia absinthium” Phytopathology 2015, 105, in press.

  4. Woodward, A. W.; Frazer, A.; Morales, A. M.; Yu, J.; Moore, A. F.; Campiglia, A. D.; Jucov, E. V.; Timofeeva, T. V.; Belfield, K. D. “Two-photon sensitized visible and near-IR luminescence of lanthanide complexes using a fluorene-based donor-π-acceptor diketonate” Dalton Transactions 2014, 43, 16626-16639.

  5. Zhang, Y.; Yue, X.; Kim, B.; Yao, S.; Belfield, K. D. “Deoxyribonucleoside Modified Squaraines as Near-IR Viscosity Sensors” Chemistry – A European Journal 2014, 20, 7249-7253.

  6. Zhang, Y.; Yue, X.; Kim, B.; Yao, S.; Bondar, M. V.; Belfield, K. D. “Sensing and Labeling Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) with Fluorogenic Near-IR-emitting Squarine Dyes” ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 2013, 5, 8710-8717.

  7. Zhang, Y.; Kim, B.; Yao, S.; Bondar, M. V.; Belfield, K. D. “Controlled Aggregation and Enhanced Two-photon Absorption of a Water-soluble Squaraine Dye with a Poly(acrylic acid) Template” Langmuir 2013, 29, 11005-11012.

  8. Yanez, C.O.; Morales, A. R.; Yue, X.; Urakami, T.; Komatsu, M.; Jarvinen, T. A. H.; Belfield, K. D. “Deep Vascular Imaging in Wounds by Two-Photon Fluorescence Microscopy” PLoS ONE 2013, 8(7), e67559. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0067559

  9. Sui, B.; Kim, B.; Zhang, Y.; Frazer, A.; Belfield, K. D. “Highly Selective Fluorescence Turn-On Sensor for Fluoride Detection” ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 2013, 5, 2290-2293.

  10. Yue, X.; Yanez, C. O.; Yao, S.; Belfield, K. D. “Selective Cell Death by Photochemically Induced pH Imbalance in Cancer Cells” Journal of the American Chemical Society 2013, 135, 2112-2115.

  11. Zhao, K.; Liu, T.; Wang, G.; Chang, X.; Xue, D.; Belfield, K. D.; Fang, Y. “A Butterfly-Shaped Pyrene Derivative of Cholesterol and its uses as a Fluorescent Probe” Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 2013, 117, 5659-5667.

  12. Morales, A. R.; Yanez, C. O.; Zhang, Y.; Wang, X.; Biswas, T.; Komatsu, M.; Belfield, K. D. “Small Molecule Fluorophore and Copolymer RGD Peptide Conjugates for Ex Vivo Two-Photon Fluorescence Tumor Vasculature Imaging” Biomaterials 2012, 33, 8477-8485.

  13. Ahn, H.Y.; Yao, S.; Wang. X.; Belfield, K. D. “Near-Infrared Emitting Squaraine Dyes with High 2PA Cross Sections for Multiphoton Fluorescence Imaging” ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces 2012, 4, 2847-2854.

  14. Biswas, S.; Belfield, K. D.; Das, R.; Ghosh, S.; Hebard, A. “Superparamagnetic Nanocomposites Templated with Pyrazole-containing Diblock Copolymers” Polymers 2012, 4, 1211-1225. DOI:10.3390/polym4021211

  15. Ahn, H.-Y.; Fairfull-Smith, K. E.; Morrow, B. J.; Lussini, V.; Kim, B.; Bondar, M. V.; Bottle, S. E.; Belfield, K. D. “Two-photon Fluorescence Microscopy Imaging of Cellular Oxidative Stress using Profluorescent Nitroxides” Journal of the American Chemical Society 2012, 134, 4721-4730.

  16. Qaddoura, M. A.; Belfield, K. D.; Heiney, P. A. “Liquid Crystal-directed Assembly and Phase Morphology of a Squaraine Dye” Supramolecular Chemistry 2012, 24, 299-311. DOI:10.1080/10610278.2012.658391

  17. Spencer, S.; Hu, H.; Li, Q.; Ahn, H.-Y.; Qaddoura, M.; Yao, S.; Ioannidis, A.; Belfield, K.; Collison, C. J. “Controlling J-aggregate Formation for Increased Short-circuit Current and Power Conversion Efficiency with a Squaraine Donor” Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications 2012, doi: 10.1002/pip.2289.

  18. Biswas, S.; Ahn, H-Y.; Bondar, M. V.; Belfield, K. D. “Two-photon Absorption Enhancement of Polymer-templated J-aggregates” Langmuir 2012, 28, 1515-1522.

  19. Qaddoura, M. A.; Belfield, K. D.; Heiney, P. A. “Liquid Crystal-directed Assembly and Phase Morphology of a Squaraine Dye” Supramolecular Chemistry 2012, 24, in press. DOI:10.1080/10610278.2012.658391

  20. Biswas, S.; Wang, X.; Morales, A. R.; Ahn, H.-Y.; Belfield, K. D. “Integrin-targeting Block Copolymer Probes for Two-photon Fluorescence Bioimaging” Biomacromolecules 2011, 12, 441-449.

  21. Qaddoura, M. A.; *Belfield, K. D.; Tongwa, P.; DeSanto, J. E.; Timofeeva, T. V.; Heiney, P. A. “Thermotropic Behavior, Self-Assembly and Photophysical Properties of a Series of Squaraines” Supramolecular Chemistry 2011, 23, 731-742. DOI: 10.1080/10610278.2011.622391

  22. Wang, X.; Morales, A. R.; Urakami, T.; Zhang, L.; Bondar, M. V.; Komatsu, M.; Belfield, K. D. “Folate Receptor-targeted Aggregation-enhanced Near-IR Emitting Silica Nanoprobe for One-photon in vivo and Two-photon ex vivo Fluorescence Bioimaging” Bioconjugate Chemistry 2011, 22, 1438-1450.

  23. Tsuchikawa, R.; Ahn, H.-Y.; Yao, S.; Belfield, K. D.; Ishigami, M. “Photosensitization of carbon nanotubes using dye aggregates” Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter 2011, 23, 202204. doi:10.1088/0953-8984/23/20/202204

  24. Wang, X.; Yao, S.; Ahn, H.-Y.; Zhang, Y.; Bondar, M. V.; Torres, J. A.; Belfield, K. D. “Folate Receptor Targeting Silica Nanoparticle Probe for Two-photon Fluorescence Bioimaging” Biomedical Optics Express 2010, 1, 453-462 (feature article).

  25. Kumi, G.; Yanez, C. O.; Belfield, K. D.; Fourkas, J. T. “High-speed multiphoton absorption polymerization: Fabrication of microfluidic channels with arbitrary cross-sections and high aspect ratios” Lab on a Chip 2010, 10, 1057-1060. DOI:10.1039/B923377F

  26. Qaddoura, M. A.; Belfield, K. D. “Probing the Texture of the Calamitic Liquid Crystalline Dimer of 4-(4-Pentenyloxy)benzoic Acid” Materials 2010, 3, 827-840.

  27. Biswas, S.; Belfield, K. D.; Das, R. K.; Ghosh, S.; Hebard, A. F. “Block Copolymer-mediated Formation of Superparamagnetic Nanocomposites” Chemistry of Materials 2009, 21, 5644-5653. DOI: 10.1021/cm902854d

  28. Qaddoura M. A.; Belfield, K. D. “Synthesis, Characterization and Texture Observations of Calamitic Liquid Crystalline Compounds” International Journal of Molecular Sciences 2009, 10, 4772-4788. DOI:10.3390/ijms10114772

  29. Belfield, K. D.; Zhang, L. “Norbornene Functionalized Diblock Copolymers via Ring Opening Metathesis Polymerization for Magnetic Nanoparticle Stabilization” Chemistry of Materials 2006, 18, 5929-5936.