The sodium citrate-coated AuNRs were prepared by the PSS replacement method.23 CTAB-stabilized AuNRs with various aspect-ratios were harvested by centrifugation to reduce the concentration of CTAB. Then, 3mL PSS (10 g/L in 5 mM NaCl) was mixed with 30 mL AuNRs solution (optical density (OD) = 3). A small amount of NaCl solution promotes the unfolding of the charged PSS chain, which was incubated at room temperature for 1 h. After centrifugation at 6000g for 15 min, the solution was finally resuspended in 30 mL of deionized water. This treatment was repeated, the pellet was reconstituted in 26.3 mL water and 3.3 mL sodium citrate (1 wt%) incubated for 12 h, followed by centrifugation at 5500 ×g for 15 min and reconstitution with 13.35 mL water and 1.65 mL of citrate solution.

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