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3D optical imaging of multiple SERS nanotags in cells

McAughtrie, Sarah and Lau, Katherine and Faulds, Karen and Graham, Duncan (2013) 3D optical imaging of multiple SERS nanotags in cells. Chemical Science, 4 (9). pp. 3566-3572. ISSN 2041-6520

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Recent studies have clearly demonstrated that Raman and surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopies are information rich, non-destructive techniques for the monitoring of subtle intracellular changes. However, despite the demonstrated and sophisticated applications of these techniques in cell studies there still remains a lack of accompanying 3D images. Herein we demonstrate for the first time combined 3D Raman and SERS imaging for the simultaneous confirmation of the cellular inclusion and multiple component detection of SERS nanotags. We also report on the 3D elucidation of the cell nuclei by multivariate analysis methods. Imaging in 3D will be critical to understanding architectural changes between diseased and healthy cells, and tissues. It will also provide non-destructive definitive proof of cellular uptake whilst simultaneously confirming targeting of SERS nanotags to their intended destinations.