Revealing competitive Förster-type resonance energy-transfer pathways in single bichromophoric molecules

Johan Hofkens*, Mircea Cotlet, Tom Vosch, Philip Tinnefeld, Kenneth D. Weston, Christophe Ego, Andrew Grimsdale, Klaus Müllen, David Beljonne, Jean Luc Brédas, Sven Jordens, Gerd Schweitzer, Markus Sauer, Frans De Schryver

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

162 Scopus citations


We demonstrate measurements of the efficiency of competing Förster-type energy-transfer pathways in single bichromophoric systems by monitoring simultaneously the fluorescence intensity, fluorescence lifetime, and the number of independent emitters with time. Peryleneimide end-capped fluorene trimers, hexamers, and polymers with interchromophore distances of 3.4, 5.9, and on average 42 nm, respectively, served as bichromophoric systems. Because of different energy-transfer efficiencies, variations in the interchromophore distance enable the switching between homoenergy transfer (energy hopping), singlet-singlet annihilation, and singlet-triplet annihilation. The data suggest that similar energy-transfer pathways have to be considered in the analysis of single-molecule trajectories of donor/acceptor pairs as well as in natural and synthetic multichromophoric systems such as light-harvesting antennas, oligomeric fluorescent proteins, and dendrimers. Here we report selectively visualization of different energy-transfer pathways taking place between identical fluorophores in individual bichromophoric molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13146-13151
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number23
StatePublished - Nov 11 2003
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'Revealing competitive Förster-type resonance energy-transfer pathways in single bichromophoric molecules'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this