Biomedical applications of nanoplasmonics
Romain Quidant, ICREA professor at Institut de Ciències Fotòniques (ICFO)
Gold nanostructures, supporting localized surface plasmon resonances, can be designed to act upon illumination as efficient point-like sources of either light or heat, opening plenty of new science and applications in biology and medicine. In this talk we discuss how both their optical and photothermal properties can be exploited to develop alternative, minimally invasive strategies for the detection and therapy of cancer.
The first part of this presentation focuses on the use of the intense and confined optical fields bound to gold nanostructures for biosensing and optical trapping. In the frame of sensing, we show that gold nanostructures lithographically prepared on glass can be engineered as compact and highly sensitive sensors to detect low concentrations of cancer markers in serum. As for optical trapping, we demonstrate that plasmonic fields enable creating on-a-chip nano-optical tweezers able to trap a large number of micro- and nano- specimens with a single laser beam of low laser intensity.
In the second part we talk about the use of gold nanoparticles as remotely controlled point-like sources of heat for photothermal cancer therapy. We first discuss, both theoretically and experimentally, the physics of heat generation at the nanoscale along with the effect of the particle shape and the illumination. We then present the use of conjugated gold nanoparticles for specific cancer cell hyperthermia.