Quantitative surface acoustic wave detection based on colloidal gold nanoparticles and their bioconjugates.Anal Chem. 2008 May 01; 80(9):3318-26.AC
The immobilization scheme of monodispersed gold nanoparticles (10-nm diameter) on piezoelectric substrate surfaces using organosilane molecules as cross-linkers has been developed for lithium niobate (LiNbO3) and silicon oxide (SiO2)/gold-covered lithium tantalate (LiTaO3) of Rayleigh and guided shear horizontal- (guided SH) surface acoustic wave (SAW) sensors. In this study, comparative measurements of gold nanoparticle adsorption kinetics using high-resolution field-emission scanning electron microscopy and SAW sensors allow the frequency responses of SAW sensors to be quantitatively correlated with surface densities of adsorbed nanoparticles. Using this approach, gold nanoparticles are used as the "nanosized mass standards" to scale the mass loading in a wide dynamical range. Rayleigh-SAW and guided SH-SAW sensors are employed here to monitor the surface mass changes on the device surfaces in gas and liquid phases, respectively. The mass sensitivity (approximately 20 Hz.cm2/ng) of Rayleigh-SAW device (fundamental oscillation frequency of 113.3 MHz in air) is more than 2 orders of magnitude higher than that of conventional 9-MHz quartz crystal microbalance sensors. Furthermore, in situ (aqueous solutions), real-time measurements of adsorption kinetics for both citrate-stabilized gold nanoparticles and DNA-gold nanoparticle conjugates are also demonstrated by guided SH-SAW (fundamental oscillation frequency of 121.3 MHz). By comparing frequency shifts between the adsorption cases of gold nanoparticles and DNA-gold nanoparticle conjugates, the average number of bound oligonucleotides per gold nanoparticle can also be determined. The high mass sensitivity (approximately 6 Hz.cm2/ng) of guided SH-SAW sensors and successful detection of DNA-gold nanoparticle conjugates paves the way for real-time biosensing in liquids using nanoparticle-enhanced SAW devices.