Abstract

Biosensors based on the shift of whispering-gallery modes in microspheres accompanying protein adsorption are described by use of a perturbation theory. For random spatial adsorption, theory predicts that the shift should be inversely proportional to microsphere radius R and proportional to protein surface density and excess polarizability. Measurements are found to be consistent with the theory, and the correspondence enables the average surface area occupied by a single protein to be estimated. These results are consistent with crystallographic data for bovine serum albumin. The theoretical shift for adsorption of a single protein is found to be extremely sensitive to the target region, with adsorption in the most sensitive region varying as 1/R5/2. Specific parameters for single protein or virus particle detection are predicted.

© 2003 Optical Society of America

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