Abstract

Optical manipulation and detection of nanoscale biospecimen such as organic nanoparticles, biomolecules, bacterial viruses, and subcellular nanostructures, is crucial in numerous biomedical and biological applications. Traditional lens-based free-space techniques for optical manipulation and detection are limited by their bulky systems and the inherent diffraction limit of light. Micro/nano optical fibers are promising candidates to overcome these issues because of their compact structure, flexibility, high sensitivity, and sub-diffraction-limit confinement. In this review, we focused on recent advances in nanoscale manipulation and biological detection using optical fibers, ranging from the fundamentals to applications for biological exploration, such as nanoparticle delivery and detection, single-molecule trapping and sensing, and single-cell manipulation and analysis. Different kinds of optical fibers were discussed in this review, including tapered fibers, plasmonic fibers, microlens-based fibers, nanofibers, and hollow fibers. We aim for this review to highlight current trends and future direction for applications of optical fibers for nanomanipulation and biodetection.

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