SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges

A special issue of Chemosensors (ISSN 2227-9040). This special issue belongs to the section "Analytical Methods, Instrumentation and Miniaturization".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 July 2023) | Viewed by 13539

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Chemical Sciences, University of Padova, 2-35122 Padova, Italy
Interests: plasmonics; surface enhanced effects; Raman spectroscopy; sensors; chemosensors
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Raman spectroscopy is attracting wide interest in several fields due to fingerprint molecular identification, the availability of portable or optical fiber equipped instruments and, most of all, the low Raman cross-section of water that makes it suitable for aqueous or biological samples. Nevertheless, anelastic Raman scattering is an intrinsic unfavored phenomenon, and a constantly increasing community is applying nanotechnology in order to amplify the far field signals by means of so-called electromagnetic as well as chemical enhancement. Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is therefore emerging in sensing applications, with sensitivities currently established at the single-molecule level. The route to upgrading SERS to practical applications indeed disseminates new challenges, such as addressing complex biological matrixes, favoring target-selective interactions, aiming qualitative/quantitative estimations, and building robust models for multicomponent analysis. All of them, and many others, are engaged by means of experimental and computational investigations. This Special Issue will collect the best contributions of a wide community of scientists to rationalize and challenge the limits of SERS in sensing technology.

Dr. Lucio Litti
Guest Editor

If you want to learn more information or need any advice, you can contact the Special Issue Editor Tammy Zhang via <tammy.zhang@mdpi.com> directly.

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Keywords

  • Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS)
  • fingerprint molecular identification
  • bio/chemical sensing
  • nanotechnology
  • experimental and computational investigations
  • analytical and biological technology

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 5959 KiB  
Article
Additional Enhancement of Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering Spectra of Myoglobin Precipitated under Action of Laser Irradiation on Self-Assembled Nanostructured Surface of Ag Films
by Irina A. Boginskaya, Ekaterina A. Slipchenko, Marina V. Sedova, Julia Yu. Zvyagina, Alexander D. Maximov, Aleksandr S. Baburin, Ilya A. Rodionov, Alexander M. Merzlikin, Ilya A. Ryzhikov and Andrey N. Lagarkov
Chemosensors 2023, 11(6), 321; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11060321 - 1 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 970
Abstract
The modifications of the microstructure of myoglobin deposited onto SERS-active Ag-based substrates by drying a drop of aqueous solution with and without laser irradiation and the corresponding surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectra are studied. It is shown that drying with laser irradiation leads [...] Read more.
The modifications of the microstructure of myoglobin deposited onto SERS-active Ag-based substrates by drying a drop of aqueous solution with and without laser irradiation and the corresponding surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectra are studied. It is shown that drying with laser irradiation leads to the formation of protein aggregates of various types, including crystal-like aggregates. It is also shown that after such drying, the aggregates generally have SERS spectra characterized by a change in the position of the vibration bands and the ratios of their amplitudes compared to the spectra of proteins dried without additional treatment. In particular, parts of the SERS spectra of aggregates formed under laser irradiation are characterized by an additional enhancement (up to 100×) compared to the SERS spectra of myoglobin dried in air at room temperature. The crystallization processes were modeled using the results of atomic force microscopy morphology studies of dried myoglobin on the SERS-active substrates to determine the conditions under which crystal-like aggregates start to grow at surface irregularities, specifically those with a volume close to that of the critical-size nucleus, and where the lowest energy of formation occurs. A correlation is established between surface irregularities, the amplitude, and the change in the SERS spectra during the drying of a myoglobin solution sample on a nanostructured Ag-based surface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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14 pages, 4271 KiB  
Article
Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopic Analysis of Flavoenzyme Cofactors: Guidance for Flavin-Related Bio- and Chemo- Sensors
by Yawen Liu, Hao Ma, Junqi Zhao, Jihong Wang, Xiaoxia Han and Bing Zhao
Chemosensors 2023, 11(3), 190; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11030190 - 12 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1575
Abstract
Flavin mononucleotides (FMNs) and flavin adenine nucleotide (FAD) play vital roles in the electron-transfer processes in diverse enzymatic reactions. Owing to the isoalloxazine chromophore, flavins are easily detectable by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS), a surface-sensitive technique. However, the details of the adsorption of [...] Read more.
Flavin mononucleotides (FMNs) and flavin adenine nucleotide (FAD) play vital roles in the electron-transfer processes in diverse enzymatic reactions. Owing to the isoalloxazine chromophore, flavins are easily detectable by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS), a surface-sensitive technique. However, the details of the adsorption of flavins on SERS-active materials have never been investigated. In this study, a comprehensive SERS analysis of flavins containing lumichrome and lumiflavin on silver nanoparticles was conducted. With the aid of density-functional-theory calculations, our results suggested that the flavin molecules were adsorbed on the silver nanoparticles via the N3 site of the isoalloxazine moiety, which had a stronger adsorption ability than the adenine moiety in the FAD. The SERS spectra of the flavins at different pH values also supported this conclusion. This study demonstrated the feasibility of SERS for the structural characterization of flavins, paving the way for the functional exploration of flavin-labeled detection sensors and flavoprotein researches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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14 pages, 3177 KiB  
Article
SERS Sensor for Human Glycated Albumin Direct Assay Based on Machine Learning Methods
by Ekaterina A. Slipchenko, Irina A. Boginskaya, Robert R. Safiullin, Ilya A. Ryzhikov, Marina V. Sedova, Konstantin N. Afanasev, Natalia L. Nechaeva, Ilya N. Kurochkin, Alexander M. Merzlikin and Andrey N. Lagarkov
Chemosensors 2022, 10(12), 520; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10120520 - 7 Dec 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1778
Abstract
In this study, a non-labeled sensor system for direct determining human glycated albumin levels for medical application is proposed. Using machine learning methods applied to surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectra of human glycated albumin and serum human albumin enabled the avoidance of complex [...] Read more.
In this study, a non-labeled sensor system for direct determining human glycated albumin levels for medical application is proposed. Using machine learning methods applied to surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectra of human glycated albumin and serum human albumin enabled the avoidance of complex sample preparation. By implementing linear discriminant analysis and regularized linear regression, classification and regression problems were solved based on the spectra obtained as a result of the experiment. The results show that, coupled with data augmentation and a special cross-validation procedure, the methods we employed yield better results in the corresponding tasks in comparison with popular random forest methods and the support vector method. The results show that SERS, in combination with machine learning methods, can be a powerful and effective tool for the simple and direct assay of protein mixtures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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12 pages, 2340 KiB  
Article
Spectroscopic Study of Phytosynthesized Ag Nanoparticles and Their Activity as SERS Substrate
by Volodymyr Dzhagan, Oleksandr Smirnov, Mariia Kovalenko, Nazar Mazur, Oleksandr Hreshchuk, Nataliya Taran, Svitlana Plokhovska, Yaroslav Pirko, Alla Yemets, Volodymyr Yukhymchuk and Dietrich R. T. Zahn
Chemosensors 2022, 10(4), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10040129 - 29 Mar 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2539
Abstract
The affordable and scalable synthesis of noble metal nanoparticles that are biocompatible without additional functionalization steps has been a growing field of research, stimulated by numerous prospective applications of these NPs. In the case of phytosynthesized or biogenic noble metal NPs, the mechanism [...] Read more.
The affordable and scalable synthesis of noble metal nanoparticles that are biocompatible without additional functionalization steps has been a growing field of research, stimulated by numerous prospective applications of these NPs. In the case of phytosynthesized or biogenic noble metal NPs, the mechanism of NP stabilization by biomolecules contained in each particular plant extract or living organism determines the possible applications of these NPs. In this work, we investigated Ag NPs synthesized in water with plant extracts of common toothwort (Lathraea squamaria) and two species of pepper (Capsicum annuum and Capsicum chinense). From FTIR and XPS, we drew conclusions about the composition of the functional groups and molecules that stabilize NPs in each extract, such as polysaccharide compounds (pectins, cellulose, glycosides and phenolic acids). Distinct characteristic IR features of amide I and amide II proteins were observed, which are common in plant extracts, while features of amide III were not distinctly observed in our extracts. A Raman spectroscopy study revealed weak own-SERS activity of the biomolecules of the extract and high efficiency of the NPs in the enhancement of “external” analytes, such as dyes and antibodies. This is the first report of the efficient SERS application of phytosynthesized Ag NPs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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10 pages, 1677 KiB  
Article
Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy for the Investigation of Chromogenic Motion Picture Films: A Preliminary Study
by Margherita Longoni, Francesco Ferretti, Sofia Zucca, Letizia Caielli and Silvia Bruni
Chemosensors 2022, 10(3), 101; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10030101 - 6 Mar 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2368
Abstract
In the present work, surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is proposed for the identification of dyes in chromogenic films. These substances, which are generated within the film itself during the colour development process, are first studied on reference molecules synthesised for the purpose and, [...] Read more.
In the present work, surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is proposed for the identification of dyes in chromogenic films. These substances, which are generated within the film itself during the colour development process, are first studied on reference molecules synthesised for the purpose and, subsequently, on dyes extracted from a chromogenic film. SERS spectroscopy proved to be an efficient technique for their investigation, providing a proof of concept for its applicability for further studies on this complex topic. SERS spectra of the reference molecules were also compared with normal Raman spectra, acquired with a spectrometer based on SSE™ technology. Furthermore, the excellent SERS properties of anisotropic nanomaterials, such as silver nanostars, have been confirmed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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Review

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19 pages, 4412 KiB  
Review
The Role of Surface Enhanced Raman Scattering for Therapeutic Drug Monitoring of Antimicrobial Agents
by Stefano Fornasaro, Dana Cialla-May, Valter Sergo and Alois Bonifacio
Chemosensors 2022, 10(4), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10040128 - 29 Mar 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3422
Abstract
The rapid quantification of antimicrobial agents is important for therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM), enabling personalized dosing schemes in critically ill patients. Highly sophisticated TDM technology is becoming available, but its implementation in hospitals is still limited. Among the various proposed techniques, surface-enhanced Raman [...] Read more.
The rapid quantification of antimicrobial agents is important for therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM), enabling personalized dosing schemes in critically ill patients. Highly sophisticated TDM technology is becoming available, but its implementation in hospitals is still limited. Among the various proposed techniques, surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) stands out as one of the more interesting due to its extremely high sensitivity, rapidity, and fingerprinting capabilities. Here, we present a comprehensive review of various SERS-based novel approaches applied for direct and indirect detection and quantification of antibiotic, antifungal, and antituberculosis drugs in different matrices, particularly focusing on the challenges for successful exploitation of this technique in the development of assays for point-of-care tests. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SERS: Analytical and Biological Challenges)
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