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Plasmonic Mesoporous Composites as Molecular Sieves for SERS Detection

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journal contribution
posted on 16.12.2015, 23:19 by Vanesa López-Puente, Sara Abalde-Cela, Paula C. Angelomé, Ramón A. Alvarez-Puebla, Luis M. Liz-Marzán
Application of surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopy to the ultrasensitive analysis of small molecules in biological samples is complicated by signal contamination by ubiquitous macromolecules such as proteins, nucleic acids, or lipids. We present a proof-of-concept study of the application of composite films comprising branched gold nanoparticles embedded in mesoporous thin films, which act as molecular sieves. The inorganic mesoporous layer only allows the diffusion of small molecules toward the plasmonic particles while preventing the contact of macromolecules in solution with the optical sensor.