Benford, Melodie Elane (2013-04). Development of a Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy Platform Technology to Detect Cardiac Biomarkers of Myocardial Infarction. Doctoral Dissertation. Thesis uri icon


  • The clinical evaluation of people with possible myocardial infarction (MI) is often limited by atypical symptoms and inconclusive initial electrocardiograms. A recent consensus from the American College of Cardiology has redefined acute MI to include cardiac markers as central to diagnosis. To address this clinical need, a sensitive microfluidic surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) nanochannel-based optical device is being developed for ultimate use as a point-of-care device for the simultaneous measurement of MI blood biomarkers. The device can provide enhancements of the Raman signal of the analyte measured of up to 1013 using a mechanical aggregation technique at the interface of nanofluidic structures enabling repeatable SERS measurements. Specifically in this research iterations of a sensitive, low volume SERS platform technology were designed that provided quantitative information across a specific range. With the SERS platforms studied, not only were SERS enhancements of up to 1013 achieved but also imprecision values of less than 10% across the 10-50 pM range using a ratiometric approach and qualitative detection down to 100 aM was achieved. Beyond assessment of SERS substrates, assay designs were investigated and characterized including, label-free techniques and competitive immunoassay formats. Lastly, detecting the SERS signal of multiplexed reporter molecules was investigated. By identifying the analyte and assay constraints the design and optimization of future assays will be aided using this SERS platform technology.

publication date

  • April 2013