Label-free optical detection of peptide synthesis on a porous silicon scaffold/sensor

Patrick Furbert, Caiyan Lu, Nicholas Winograd, Lisa DeLouise

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Mesoporous porous silicon (PSi) microcavity sensors are used to conduct conventional solid-phase peptide synthesis. The sensor optical response provides a convenient means to monitor the synthesis reaction in a nondestructive manner. Measurements indicate that peptide synthesis occurs only when the PSi sensor/scaffold is amine-terminated using, for example, the amino silane or deprotected acid-labile Rink linker. Equivalent coupling efficiencies of the first amino acid to both amine terminations are observed. Kinetic studies indicate that coupling reactions are 90% complete in 1 h. Quantitative analysis of the optical response following the synthesis of homo-oligopeptides (4-mers) suggests that coupling efficiencies and/or optical thickness changes depend on the peptide length. The synthesis of the cell adhesive oligopeptide (RGD) was monitored by the optical sensor response and validated by the cell culture of primary dermal fibroblasts. Secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) analysis successfully detected peptide on the silicon wafer adjacent to the PSi. Our findings suggest the potential to exploit the high surface area, efficient coupling, and intrinsic optical detection properties of PSi for label-free high-throughput screening.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2908-2915
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 18 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Label-free optical detection of peptide synthesis on a porous silicon scaffold/sensor'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this