Special Issue "Nanomaterials for Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy and Application in Trace Detection"

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 May 2019)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Xiaonan Lu

Food Nutrition and Health Program, Faculty of Land and Food Systems, University of British Columbia, Canada
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +1-6048222551
Interests: food safety; food analysis; detection of chemical and microbiological hazards in foods; sensing; fingerprinting spectroscopy; food nanotechnology
Guest Editor
Dr. Yaxi Hu

Food Nutrition and Health Program, Faculty of Land and Food Systems, University of British Columbia, Canada
Website | E-Mail
Interests: food quality; food authentication; food safety; fingerprinting spectroscopy; chemometrics; microfluidic “lab-on-a-chip”

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

With the advances in nanomaterials and nanofabrication, surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) has been extensively developed and applied in the trace detection of various analytes in either a simple or a complicated sample matrix. This includes, but is not limited to, the detection of antibiotic residues in animal-producing meat products, detection of pathogenic bacteria in human urine, and detection of heavy metal contamination of water. Therefore, we invite authors to contribute either original research articles or comprehensive review articles covering the most recent progress and advancement in the development and application of various nanomaterials in SERS trace detection. This Special Issue aims to cover a broad range of topics, from the synthesis of various nanomaterials that can provide improved reproducibility of SERS signals to developing new protocols that can facilitate the reliable detection of trace amounts of analytes without interfered by the sample matrices significantly. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Design and synthesis of novel nanomaterials as the SERS-active substrates
  • Development of tandem-SERS methodologies to improve the sensing reliability
  • Novel and more effective sample pretreatment approaches that can reduce the SERS signal interference and improve the power of detection
  • Advanced chemometric models that can improve detection power and reliability of SERS
  • Summary of recent applications of SERS in the detection of trace-level target(s) present in agri-food, clinical, and environmental sample matrices
  • SERS application in a microfluidic “lab-on-a-chip” platform
  • Development of novel nanomaterials as SERS tags
  • Advancement of spectroscopic hardware that can improve SERS performance and/or broaden SERS application  

Prof. Dr. Xiaonan Lu
Dr. Yaxi Hu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • nanomaterials
  • nanofabrication
  • surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy
  • chemometrics
  • trace-level analysis
  • microfluidic “lab-on-a-chip”

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Detection of Circulating Tumor Cells Using Membrane-Based SERS Platform: A New Diagnostic Approach for ‘Liquid Biopsy’
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 366; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030366
Received: 7 January 2019 / Revised: 18 February 2019 / Accepted: 26 February 2019 / Published: 5 March 2019
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Abstract
The detection and monitoring of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in blood is an important strategy for early cancer evidence, analysis, monitoring of therapeutic response, and optimization of cancer therapy treatments. In this work, tailor-made membranes (MBSP) for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS)-based analysis, which [...] Read more.
The detection and monitoring of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in blood is an important strategy for early cancer evidence, analysis, monitoring of therapeutic response, and optimization of cancer therapy treatments. In this work, tailor-made membranes (MBSP) for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS)-based analysis, which permitted the separation and enrichment of CTCs from blood samples, were developed. A thin layer of SERS-active metals deposited on polymer mat enhanced the Raman signals of CTCs and provided further insight into CTCs molecular and biochemical composition. The SERS spectra of all studied cells—prostate cancer (PC3), cervical carcinoma (HeLa), and leucocytes as an example of healthy (normal) cell—revealed significant differences in both the band positions and/or their relative intensities. The multivariate statistical technique based on principal component analysis (PCA) was applied to identify the most significant differences (marker bands) in SERS data among the analyzed cells and to perform quantitative analysis of SERS data. Based on a developed PCA algorithm, the studied cell types were classified with an accuracy of 95% in 2D PCA to 98% in 3D PCA. These results clearly indicate the diagnostic efficiency for the discrimination between cancer and normal cells. In our approach, we exploited the one-step technology that exceeds most of the multi-stage CTCs analysis methods used and enables simultaneous filtration, enrichment, and identification of the tumor cells from blood specimens. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Application of Self-Assembled Raman Spectrum-Enhanced Substrate in Detection of Dissolved Furfural in Insulating Oil
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9010017
Received: 21 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 19 December 2018 / Published: 23 December 2018
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Abstract
Accurate detection of dissolved aging features in transformer oil is the key to judging the aging degree of oil-paper insulation. In this work, in order to realize in situ detection of furfural dissolved in transformer oil, silver nanoparticles were self-assembled on the surface [...] Read more.
Accurate detection of dissolved aging features in transformer oil is the key to judging the aging degree of oil-paper insulation. In this work, in order to realize in situ detection of furfural dissolved in transformer oil, silver nanoparticles were self-assembled on the surface of gold film with P-aminophenylthiophenol (PATP) as a coupling agent. Rhodamine-6G (R6G) was used as the probe molecule to test the enhancement effect. By optimizing the molecular concentration, molecular deposition time, and silver sol deposition time of PATP, the nanoparticles were made more uniform and compact, and an enhanced substrate with rich hot spots was obtained. The optimum substrate was developed, and surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) detection of trace furfural dissolved in transformer oil was realized. The results showed that the substrate prepared under the conditions of 0.1 mol/L PATP, 5 h deposition in PATP and 12 h immersion in silver sol, had the best reinforcement effect (that is, uniform and compact particle arrangement and no particle clusters). By use of this substrate, the minimum detectable concentration of furfural in transformer oil was about 1.06 mg/L, which provides a new method for fast and nondestructive detection of transformer aging diagnosis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Rapid Tartrazine Determination in Large Yellow Croaker with Ag Nanowires Using Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(12), 967; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8120967
Received: 1 November 2018 / Revised: 14 November 2018 / Accepted: 17 November 2018 / Published: 23 November 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (3016 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this work, surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) technology coupled with Ag nanowires was shown to be a promising tool in the detection of tartrazine in large yellow croaker for the first time. Ag nanowires with a uniform diameter were fabricated by an efficient [...] Read more.
In this work, surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) technology coupled with Ag nanowires was shown to be a promising tool in the detection of tartrazine in large yellow croaker for the first time. Ag nanowires with a uniform diameter were fabricated by an efficient and manageable polyol method. The partial least square model was established for the quantitative analysis of tartrazine, which showed a relatively high linear correlation between actual and predicted concentrations of standard tartrazine solutions. An optimal sample preparation method was also selected and used to extract tartrazine from large yellow croaker within 20 min. The lowest concentration detected was 20.38 ng/cm2, which fully meets the requirements of tartrazine testing in aquatic products. This study indicated that SERS technology combined with the as-prepared Ag nanowires could detect tartrazine sensitively and provide an easily operable and time-saving way to monitor tartrazine in large yellow croaker. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Steel Wire Mesh as a Thermally Resistant SERS Substrate
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(9), 663; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8090663
Received: 4 July 2018 / Revised: 3 August 2018 / Accepted: 23 August 2018 / Published: 26 August 2018
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Abstract
In this paper, we present novel type of Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) platform, based on stainless steel wire mesh (SSWM) covered with thin silver layer. The stainless steel wire mesh, typically used in chemical engineering industry, is a cheap and versatile substrate for [...] Read more.
In this paper, we present novel type of Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) platform, based on stainless steel wire mesh (SSWM) covered with thin silver layer. The stainless steel wire mesh, typically used in chemical engineering industry, is a cheap and versatile substrate for SERS platforms. SSWM consists of multiple steel wires with diameter of tens of micrometers, which gives periodical structure and high stiffness. Moreover, stainless steel provides great resistance towards organic and inorganic solvents and provides excellent heat dissipation. It is worth mentioning that continuous irradiation of the laser beam over the SERS substrate can be a source of significant increase in the local temperature of metallic nanostructures, which can lead to thermal degradation or fragmentation of the adsorbed analyte. Decomposition or fragmentation of the analysed sample usually causea a significant decrease in the intensity of recorded SERS bands, which either leads to false SERS responses or enables the analysis of spectral data. To our knowledge, we have developed for the first time the thermally resistant SERS platform. This type of SERS substrate, termed Ag/SSWM, exhibit high sensitivity (Enhancement Factor (EF) = 106) and reproducibility (Relative Standard Deviation (RSD) of 6.4%) towards detection of p-mercaptobenzoic acid (p-MBA). Besides, Ag/SSWM allows the specific detection and differentiation between Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacterial species: Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis in label-free and reproducible manner. The unique properties of designed substrate overcome the limitations associated with photo- and thermal degradation of sensitive bacterial samples. Thus, a distinctive SERS analysis of all kinds of chemical and biological samples at high sensitivity and selectivity can be performed on the developed SERS-active substrate. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Large-Scale Fabrication of Ultrasensitive and Uniform Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering Substrates for the Trace Detection of Pesticides
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(7), 520; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8070520
Received: 8 June 2018 / Revised: 7 July 2018 / Accepted: 9 July 2018 / Published: 12 July 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1732 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Technology transfer from laboratory into practical application needs to meet the demands of economic viability and operational simplicity. This paper reports a simple and convenient strategy to fabricate large-scale and ultrasensitive surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrates. In this strategy, no toxic chemicals or [...] Read more.
Technology transfer from laboratory into practical application needs to meet the demands of economic viability and operational simplicity. This paper reports a simple and convenient strategy to fabricate large-scale and ultrasensitive surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrates. In this strategy, no toxic chemicals or sophisticated instruments are required to fabricate the SERS substrates. On one hand, Ag nanoparticles (NPs) with relatively uniform size were synthesized using the modified Tollens method, which employs an ultra-low concentration of Ag+ and excessive amounts of glucose as a reducing agent. On the other hand, when a drop of the colloidal Ag NPs dries on a horizontal solid surface, the droplet becomes ropy, turns into a layered structure under gravity, and hardens. During evaporation, capillary flow was burdened by viscidity resistance from the ropy glucose solution. Thus, the coffee-ring effect is eliminated, leading to a uniform deposition of Ag NPs. With this method, flat Ag NPs-based SERS active films were formed in array-well plates defined by hole-shaped polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) structures bonded on glass substrates, which were made for convenient detection. The strong SERS activity of these substrates allowed us to reach detection limits down to 10−14 M of Rhodamine 6 G and 10−10 M of thiram (pesticide). Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Detection and Characterization of Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Using Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(10), 762; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8100762
Received: 25 August 2018 / Revised: 12 September 2018 / Accepted: 23 September 2018 / Published: 26 September 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (2701 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This mini-review summarizes the most recent progress concerning the use of surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) for the detection and characterization of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. We first discussed the design and synthesis of various types of nanomaterials that can be used as the SERS-active substrates [...] Read more.
This mini-review summarizes the most recent progress concerning the use of surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) for the detection and characterization of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. We first discussed the design and synthesis of various types of nanomaterials that can be used as the SERS-active substrates for biosensing trace levels of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. We then reviewed the tandem-SERS strategy of integrating a separation element/platform with SERS sensing to achieve the detection of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the environmental, agri-food, and clinical samples. Finally, we demonstrated the application of using SERS to investigate bacterial antibiotic resistance and susceptibility as well as the working mechanism of antibiotics based on spectral fingerprinting of the whole cells. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Analysis of Biomolecules Based on the Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy
Nanomaterials 2018, 8(9), 730; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano8090730
Received: 28 August 2018 / Revised: 10 September 2018 / Accepted: 14 September 2018 / Published: 15 September 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (4090 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Analyzing biomolecules is essential for disease diagnostics, food safety inspection, environmental monitoring and pharmaceutical development. Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is a powerful tool for detecting biomolecules due to its high sensitivity, rapidness and specificity in identifying molecular structures. This review focuses on the [...] Read more.
Analyzing biomolecules is essential for disease diagnostics, food safety inspection, environmental monitoring and pharmaceutical development. Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is a powerful tool for detecting biomolecules due to its high sensitivity, rapidness and specificity in identifying molecular structures. This review focuses on the SERS analysis of biomolecules originated from humans, animals, plants and microorganisms, combined with nanomaterials as SERS substrates and nanotags. Recent advances in SERS detection of target molecules were summarized with different detection strategies including label-free and label-mediated types. This comprehensive and critical summary of SERS analysis of biomolecules might help researchers from different scientific backgrounds spark new ideas and proposals. Full article
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