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    As a kind of promising nanomaterials, metal nanoclusters (MNCs) generally composed of several to hundreds of metal atoms have received increasing interest owing to their unique properties, such as ultrasmall size (<2 nm), fascinating physical and chemical properties, and so on. Recently, template-assisted synthesis of MNCs (e.g., Au, Ag, Cu, Pt and Cd) has attracted extensive attention in biological fields. Up to now, various templates (e.g., dendrimers, polymers, DNAs, proteins and peptides) with different configurations and spaces have been applied to prepare MNCs with the advantages of facile preparation, controllable size, good water-solubility and biocompatibility. Herein, we focus on the recent advances in the template-assisted synthesis of MNCs, including the templates used to synthesize MNCs, and their applications in biosensing, bioimaging, and disease theranostics. Finally, the challenges and future perspectives of template-assisted synthesized MNCs are highlighted. We believe that this review could not only arouse more interest in MNCs but also promote their further development and applications by presenting the recent advances in this area to researchers from various fields, such as chemistry, material science, physiology, biomedicine, and so on. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


    Zhenjie Qiao, Jian Zhang, Xin Hai, Yongcun Yan, Weiling Song, Sai Bi. Recent advances in templated synthesis of metal nanoclusters and their applications in biosensing, bioimaging and theranostics. Biosensors & bioelectronics. 2021 Mar 15;176:112898

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    PMID: 33358287

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