Characterization of the evanescent field profile and bound mass sensitivity of a label-free silicon photonic microring resonator biosensing platform

Matthew S. Luchansky, Adam L. Washburn, Teresa A. Martin, Muzammil Iqbal, L. Cary Gunn, Ryan C. Bailey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Silicon photonic microring resonators have emerged as a sensitive and highly multiplexed platform for real-time biomolecule detection. Herein, we profile the evanescent decay of device sensitivity towards molecular binding as a function of distance from the microring surface. By growing multilayers of electrostatically bound polymers extending from the sensor surface, we are able to empirically determine that the evanescent field intensity is characterized by a 1/e response decay distance of 63nm. We then applied this knowledge to study the growth of biomolecular assemblies consisting of alternating layers of biotinylated antibody and streptavidin, which follow a more complex growth pattern. Additionally, by monitoring the shift in microring resonance wavelength upon the deposition of a radioactively labeled protein, the mass sensitivity of the ring resonator platform was determined to be 14.7±6.7 [pg/mm2]/Δpm. By extrapolating to the instrument noise baseline, the mass/area limit of detection is found to be 1.5±0.7pg/mm2. Taking the small surface area of the microring sensor into consideration, this value corresponds to an absolute mass detection limit of 125ag (i.e. 0.8 zmol of IgG), demonstrating the remarkable sensitivity of this promising label-free biomolecular sensing platform.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1283-1291
Number of pages9
JournalBiosensors and Bioelectronics
Volume26
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 15 2010

Keywords

  • Biosensor
  • Evanescent field
  • Label-free
  • Microring resonator
  • Silicon photonics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Electrochemistry

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