Gold-nanorod-enhanced Raman spectroscopy encoded micro-quartz pieces for the multiplex detection of biomolecules

  • Bei Wang
  • Tian Guan
  • Jingying JiangEmail author
  • Qinghua He
  • Xuejing Chen
  • Guangxia Feng
  • Bangrong Lu
  • Xuesi Zhou
  • Yonghong HeEmail author
Research Paper


The rapid analysis and detection of biomolecules has become increasingly important in biological research. Hence, here we propose a novel suspension array method that is based on gold nanorod (AuNR)-enhanced Raman spectroscopy and uses micro-quartz pieces (MQPs) as microcarriers. AuNRs and Raman reporter molecules are coupled together by Au–S bonds to obtain surface-enhanced Raman scattering labels (SERS labels). The SERS labels are then assembled on the surfaces of the MQPs via electrostatic interactions, yielding encoded MQPs. Experimental results showed that the encoded MQPs could be decoded using a Raman spectrometer. A multiplex immunoassay experiment demonstrated the validity and specificity of these encoded MQPs when they were used for bioanalysis. In concentration gradient experiments, the proposed method was found to give a linear concentration response to the target biomolecule at target concentrations of 0.46875–30 nM, and the detection limit was calculated to be 1.78 nM. The proposed method utilizes MQPs as carriers rather than conventional microbeads, which allows the interference caused by the background fluorescence of microbeads to be eliminated. The fluorescence of the encoded MQPs can be simply, rapidly, and inexpensively quantified using fluorescence microscopy. By dividing the quantitative and qualitative detection of biomolecules into two independent channels, crosstalk between the encoded signal and the labeled signal is averted and high decoding accuracy and detection sensitivity are guaranteed.

Graphical abstract


Suspension array Gold nanorods Raman spectroscopy Surface-enhanced Raman scattering Encoded micro-quartz pieces 



Financial support from the Tianjin Applied Basic and Frontier Technology Research Program (16JCZDJC31200), the National Science Foundation of China (NSFC) (61875102, 61675113, 61527808), and the Science and Technology Research Program of Shenzhen City (JCYJ20170412170255060, JCYJ20160324163759208, JCYJ20170412171856582, JCYJ20170816161836562, JCYJ20170817111912585) is acknowledged.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

216_2019_1929_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.5 mb)
ESM 1 (PDF 1.54 mb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bei Wang
    • 1
  • Tian Guan
    • 2
  • Jingying Jiang
    • 3
    • 4
    Email author
  • Qinghua He
    • 2
  • Xuejing Chen
    • 2
  • Guangxia Feng
    • 2
  • Bangrong Lu
    • 2
  • Xuesi Zhou
    • 2
  • Yonghong He
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.School of Precision Instruments & Optoelectronics EngineeringTianjin UniversityTianjinChina
  2. 2.Institute of Optical Imaging and Sensing, Shenzhen Key Laboratory for Minimal Invasive Medical Technologies, Graduate School at ShenzhenTsinghua UniversityShenzhenChina
  3. 3.Paul C. Lauterbur Research Center for Biomedical Imaging, Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced TechnologyChinese Academy of SciencesShenzhenChina
  4. 4.Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Big Data-Based Precision MedicineBeihang UniversityBeijingChina

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