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Anal Chem. 2011 Apr 15;83(8):3082-8. doi: 10.1021/ac1033424. Epub 2011 Mar 24.

Molecularly imprinted Au nanoparticles composites on Au surfaces for the surface plasmon resonance detection of pentaerythritol tetranitrate, nitroglycerin, and ethylene glycol dinitrate.

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Institute of Chemistry, Center for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91904, Israel.


Molecularly imprinted Au nanoparticles (NPs) composites are generated on Au-coated glass surfaces. The imprinting process involves the electropolymerization of thioaniline-functionalized Au NPs (3.5 nm) on a thioaniline monolayer-modified Au surface in the presence of a carboxylic acid, acting as a template analogue for the respective explosive. The exclusion of the imprinting template from the Au NPs matrix yields the respective imprinted composites. The binding of the analyte explosives to the Au NPs matrixes is probed by surface plasmon resonance spectroscopy, SPR, where the electronic coupling between the localized plasmon of the Au NPs and the surface plasmon wave leads to the amplification of the SPR responses originating from the dielectric changes of the matrixes upon binding of the different explosive materials. The resulting imprinted matrixes reveal high affinities and selectivity toward the imprinted explosives. Using citric acid as an imprinting template, Au NPs matrixes for the specific analysis of pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN) or of nitroglycerin (NG) were prepared, leading to detection limits of 200 fM and 20 pM, respectively. Similarly, using maleic acid or fumaric acid as imprinting templates, high-affinity sensing composites for ethylene glycol dinitrate (EGDN) were synthesized, leading to a detection limit of 400 fM for both matrixes.

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