Detection of Chloroalkanes by Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy in Microfluidic Chips
Pilat, Z., Kizovsky, M., Jezek, J., Kratky, S., Sobota, J., Siler, M., Samek, O., Buryska, T., Vanacek, P., Damborsky, J., Prokop, Z., Zemanek, P.
SENSORS 18: 3212 (2018)
Optofluidics, a research discipline combining optics with microfluidics, currently aspires to revolutionize the analysis of biological and chemical samples, e.g., for medicine, pharmacology, or molecular biology. In order to detect low concentrations of analytes in water, we have developed an optofluidic device containing a nanostructured substrate for surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). The geometry of the gold surface allows localized plasmon oscillations to give rise to the SERS effect, in which the Raman spectral lines are intensified by the interaction of the plasmonic field with the electrons in the molecular bonds. The SERS substrate was enclosed in a microfluidic system, which allowed transport and precise mixing of the analyzed fluids while preventing contamination or abrasion of the highly sensitive substrate. To illustrate its practical use, we employed the device for quantitative detection of persistent environmental pollutant 1,2,3-trichloropropane in water in submillimolar concentrations. The developed sensor allows fast and simple quantification of halogenated compounds and it will contribute towards the environmental monitoring and enzymology experiments with engineered haloalkane dehalogenase enzymes.