Microchimica Acta

, 186:24 | Cite as

Magnesium and nitrogen co-doped carbon dots as fluorescent probes for quenchometric determination of paraoxon using pralidoxime as a linker

  • Juan Peng
  • Wenqing Yin
  • Jing Shi
  • Xiaoyong JinEmail author
  • Gang Ni
Original Paper


Carbon dots codoped with magnesium and nitrogen (Mg,N-CDs) were synthesized via a one-step microwave-assisted method. They display blue fluorescence (with excitation/emission peaks at 380/460 nm and a 33% quantum yield) and possess high dispersity in aqueous solution. The fluorescence of the Mg,N-CDs is highly sensitive to paraoxon in the presence of pralidoxime (PAM) acting as the linking agent. Electron transfer from Mg,N-CDs to paraoxon in the presence of PAM leads to the fluorescence quenching of Mg,N-CDs. The concentration of paraoxon is determined by measuring the quenching efficiency of the Mg,N-CD-PAM assay system. Fluorescence drops with increasing concentrations of paraoxon in the 0.005–3.0 μM range, and the limit of detection is 0.87 nM. The method is highly selective for paraoxon even in the presence of possible interferences. Real sample study of tap and river water showed the assay to have good repeatability and accuracy.

Graphical abstract

Schematic diagram of magnesium and nitrogen co-doped carbon dots (Mg,N-CDs) as a fluorescent probe for paraoxon detection by using pralidoxime as a linker.


Quantum yield Fluorescence quenching Electron transfer Oxime Organophosphorus pesticides 



We greatly appreciate the support of National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos: 21765016, 21765017, 21645002, and 21567021). This work was also supported by Ningxia Science and Technology Innovation Leading Talents Training (KJT2018002), National First-rate Discipline Construction Project of Ningxia (NXYLXK2017A04) and Major Innovation Projects for Building First-class University in China’s Western Region (ZKZD2017003).

Compliance with ethical standards

The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

604_2018_3147_MOESM1_ESM.docx (192 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 191 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Peng
    • 1
  • Wenqing Yin
    • 1
  • Jing Shi
    • 1
  • Xiaoyong Jin
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gang Ni
    • 1
  1. 1.Stage Key Laboratory of High-efficiency Coal Utilization and Green Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical EngineeringNingxia UniversityYinchuanChina

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