Optical nanosensors and nanoprobes: From single-cell exploration to medical diagnostics
This lecture presents an overview of recent advances in the development of optical nanobiosensor and nanoprobe technology at the nexus of engineering, biology, medicine and nanotechnology. The presentation describes two areas of research related to the development of nanoprobes and nanosensors for biomolecule detection and single-cell analysis : (1) plasmonics nanoprobes using surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) detection; and (2) nanobiosensors for in vivo analysis of a single cell for molecular diagnostics and imaging, and ultra-high throughput screening. Novel nanobiosensors and nanoprobes combining bio-recognition and nanotechnology have been developed for in-vitro molecular diagnostics and in-vivo monitoring of biological targets and biochemical processes in a single living cell. These studies demonstrate applications of plasmonics molecular sentinel nanoprobes for diagnostics of diseases such as cancer and the use of nano-biosensors for measurements of molecular signaling pathways inside a single cell. Fiberoptics-based nanobiosensors are used to detect apoptotic processes in single cells following photodynamic cancer treatment or to monitor pH in cancer cells. These nanodevices open new possibilities to a wide range of applications in medical diagnostics at the point of care, global health, molecular imaging, biology research, ultra-high throughput screening, and investigations of the therapeutic action of pharmaceutical agents. © 2012 SPIE.
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