[Analytical Chemistry] Thermo-Optical Characterization of Photothermal Optical Phase Shift Detection
The expansion of microfluidics research to nanofluidics requires absolutely sensitive and universal detection methods. Photothermal detection, which utilizes optical absorption and nonradiative relaxation, is promising for the sensitive detection of nonlabeled biomolecules in nanofluidic channels. We have previously developed a photothermal optical phase shift (POPS) detection method to detect nonfluorescent molecules sensitively, while a rapid decrease of the sensitivity in nanochannels and the introduction of an ultraviolet (UV) excitation system were issues to be addressed. In the present study, our primal aim is to characterize the POPS signal in terms of the thermo-optical properties and quantitatively evaluate the causes for the decrease in sensitivity. The UV excitation system is then introduced into the POPS detector to realize the sensitive detection of nonlabeled biomolecules. The UV-POPS detection system is designed and constructed from scratch based on a symmetric microscope. The results of simulations and experiments reveal that the sensitivity decreases due to a reduction of the detection volume, dissipation of the heat, and cancellation of the changes in the refractive indices. Finally, determination of the concentration of a nonlabeled protein (bovine serum albumin) is performed in a very thin 900 nm deep nanochannel. As a result, the limit of detection (LOD) is 2.3 μM (600 molecules in the 440 attoliter detection volume), which is as low as that previously obtained for our visible POPS detector. UV-POPS detection is thus expected be a powerful technique for the study of biomolecules, including DNAs and proteins confined in nanofluidic channels.
Hisashi Shimizu, Naoya Miyawaki, Yoshihiro Asano, Kazuma Mawatari, and Takehiko Kitamori Anal. Chem., Just Accepted Manuscript DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.7b00630 Publication Date (Web): May 11, 2017 Copyright © 2017 American Chemical Society