We have engineered hybrid nanostructures derived from erythrocytes, which can be doped with various near infrared (NIR) organic chromophores, including the FDA-approved indocyanine green (ICG). We refer to these vesicles as NIR erythrocyte-mimicking transducers (NETs), as they are capable of generating heat, reactive oxygen species (ROS) or emit fluorescence light. We present preliminary results that demonstrate the effectiveness of NETs for fluorescence imaging and photodynamic therapeutic destruction of breast cancer cells, upon photo-excitation using NIR light. These hybrid nanostructures present a promising platform with theranostic capability for future biomedical clinical applications. © 2016 SPIE.