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Anal Chem. 2011 Apr 15;83(8):3076-81. doi: 10.1021/ac103329b. Epub 2011 Mar 17.

Ultrafast surface enhanced resonance Raman scattering detection in droplet-based microfluidic systems.

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Materials Department, Imperial College London, South Kensington Campus, London SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom.


The development of ultrafast Raman-based detection is one of the most interesting challenges underpinning the application of droplet-based microfluidics. Herein, we describe the use of surface-enhanced resonance Raman spectroscopy (SERRS) with submillisecond time resolution as a powerful detection tool in microdroplet reactors. Individual droplets containing silver nanoparticle aggregates functionalized with Raman reporters are interrogated and characterized by full spectra acquisitions with high spatial resolution in real time. Whereas previous works coupling SERRS with droplet-based microfluidics acquire a single spectrum over single or multiple droplets, we build upon these results by increasing our temporal resolution by 2 orders of magnitude. This allows us to interrogate multiple points within one individual droplet. The SERRS signals emitted from the aggregates are utilized to access the influence of flow rate on droplet size and throughput. Accordingly, our approach allows for high-throughput analysis that facilitates the study of other biological assays or molecular interactions.

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