Infrared Plasmonic Biosensor for Real-Time and Label-Free Monitoring of Lipid Membranes

Odeta Limaj, Dordaneh Etezadi, Nathan J. Wittenberg, Daniel Rodrigo, Daehan Yoo, Sang Hyun Oh, Hatice Altug

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

148 Scopus citations


In this work, we present an infrared plasmonic biosensor for chemical-specific detection and monitoring of biomimetic lipid membranes in a label-free and real-time fashion. Lipid membranes constitute the primary biological interface mediating cell signaling and interaction with drugs and pathogens. By exploiting the plasmonic field enhancement in the vicinity of engineered and surface-modified nanoantennas, the proposed biosensor is able to capture the vibrational fingerprints of lipid molecules and monitor in real time the formation kinetics of planar biomimetic membranes in aqueous environments. Furthermore, we show that this plasmonic biosensor features high-field enhancement extending over tens of nanometers away from the surface, matching the size of typical bioassays while preserving high sensitivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1502-1508
Number of pages7
JournalNano letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 10 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We acknowledge École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne and Center of MicroNano Technology for financial support and nanofabrication. We also acknowledge European Commission through FP7-IEF-2013-625673- GRYPHON project, the Swiss National Science Foundation through project 133583, NATO''s Public Diplomacy Division in the framework of "Science for Peace"; European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under Grant 644956, Blanceflor Boncompagni Ludovisi, née bildt, scholarship. This work was also supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (R01 GM092993), National Science Foundation (CAREER Award), MnDRIVE Research Initiative and Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics (N.J.W., D.Y., S.H.O.).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Chemical Society.


  • Surface-enhanced infrared absorption
  • label-free biosensor
  • lipid membrane
  • near-field decay
  • plasmonics
  • real-time kinetics


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