About this Research Topic
Plasmonics is an emerging field that examines the interaction between light and metallic nanostructures at the metal-dielectric interface, and encompasses established techniques such as Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering (SERS) and Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR), along with other emerging technologies. For bioanalytical applications, metallic surfaces are engineered to be optimized for high enhancement factors and molecular specificity. Significant research has been dedicated to the fabrication of plasmonic substrates and their use for bioanalytical applications. This includes the use of different materials, sizes, shapes, and architectures to achieve high sensitivity and specificity as well as tunability or flexibility. Different fundamental approaches for molecular detection have been well explored in the past several years, such as label-free and functional assays, and are applied to small molecules, proteins, DNA, and biologically-relevant nanoparticles such as exosomes or viruses. The use of plasmonics is particularly suitable for point of care applications, due to the potential for low cost and high sensitivity of such assays. Moreover, the ability of plasmonic structures to concentrate light in subdiffraction volumes opens up new applications in nanooptoelectronics as well as for plasmonic metamaterials in the THz region with unique properties not found in nature.
In this Research Topic we focus on highlighting plasmonic technologies that seek to address problems in global health through fundamental and “proof-of-concept” research. These include addressing, for example, detection and characterization of disease via molecular markers, detection and characterization of organelles such as exosomes, detection of bacteria or other microorganisms, applications to point of care, applications in low resource environments, and tropical diseases. Original research, critical reviews, and perspectives on plasmonics applied to global health-related challenges are all welcome to be submitted to this Research Topic.
Keywords: Plasmonics, photonics, biosensing, global health, low resource environments
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