Gant, Virgil Alexander (2005-08). Detection of integrins using surface enhanced raman spectroscopy. Master's Thesis. Thesis uri icon


  • Integrins are transmembrane heterodimer protein receptors that mediate adherence to both the intracellular cytoskeleton and extracellular matrix. They play a major role in cellular adhesion and the breadth of their importance in biology is only recently being understood. The ability to detect concentrations of integrins on the cell surface, spatially resolve them, and study the dynamics of their behavior would be a significant advance in this field. Ultimately, the ability to detect dynamic changes of integrins on the surface of a cell maybe possible by developing a combined device such as an atomic force microscope (AFM) and surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) system. However, the focus of this research is to first determine if integrins can be detected using SERS. Surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is technique used to detect the presence of analytes at the nanomolar level or below, through detection of inelastically scattered light. This thesis discusses the detection of integrins employing SERS as the detection modality. Integrins have been detected, in solution, using two silver colloids as the enhancing surface. Two silver colloid preparation methods are compared by ease of formulation and degree of enhancement in this thesis. Citrate and hydroxylamine hydrochloride (HA-HCl) reduced silver colloids were prepared through wet chemistry,compared using UV-Vis light spectroscopy, and tested for surface enhancement using adenine (a strong SERS active molecule), and two different integrins, (alpha)V(beta)3 and (alpha)5(beta)1. Results indicated that both colloids demonstrate SERS activity for varying concentrations of adenine as compared to standard non-enhanced Raman, however, only the citrate reduced colloid showed significant enhancement effect for the integrins.

publication date

  • May 2003