A human-safe fluorescence particle that can be used for fluorescence detection instruments or act as a safe simulant for mimicking the fluorescence properties of microorganisms. The particle comprises a non-biological carrier and natural fluorophores encapsulated in the non-biological carrier. By doping biodegradable-polymer drug delivery microspheres with natural or synthetic fluorophores, the desired fluorescence can be attained or biological organisms can be simulated without the associated risks and logistical difficulties of live microorganisms.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.