3 years ago

On-Chip Photothermal Analyte Detection Using Integrated Luminescent Temperature Sensors

On-Chip Photothermal Analyte Detection Using Integrated Luminescent Temperature Sensors
Simon A. Pfeiffer, Stefan Nagl
Optical absorbance detection based on attenuated light transmission is limited in sensitivity due to short path lengths in microfluidic and other miniaturized platforms. An alternative is detection using the photothermal effect. Herein we introduce a new kind of photothermal absorbance measurement using integrated luminescent temperature sensor spots inside microfluidic channels. The temperature sensors were photopolymerized inside the channels from NOA 81 UV-curable thiolene prepolymer doped with a tris(1,10-phenanthroline)ruthenium(II) temperature probe. The polymerized sensing structures were as small as 26 ± 3 μm in diameter and displayed a temperature resolution of better than 0.3 K between 20 and 50 °C. The absorbance from 532 nm laser excitation of the food dye Amaranth as a model analyte was quantified using these spots, and the influence of the flow rate, laser power, and concentration was investigated. Calibration yielded a linear relationship between analyte concentration and the temperature signal in the channels. The limit of detection for the azo-dye Amaranth (E123) in this setup was 13 μM. A minimal detectable absorbance of 3.2 × 10–3 AU was obtained using an optical path length of 125 μm in this initial study. A microreactor with integrated temperature sensors was then employed for an absorbance-based miniaturized nitrite analysis, yielding a detection limit of 26 μM at a total assay time of only 75 s. This technique is very promising for sensitive, and potentially spatially resolved, optical absorbance detection on the micro- and nanoscale.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.7b02220

DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.7b02220

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