Title: Matrix-Independent Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering Detection of Uranyl Using Electrospun Amidoximated Polyacrylonitrile Mats and Gold Nanostars.
Authors: Lu, Grace; Johns, Adam J; Neupane, Binita; Phan, Hoa T; Cwiertny, David M; Forbes, Tori Z; Haes, Amanda J
Published In Anal Chem, (2018 06 05)
Abstract: Reproducible detection of uranyl, an important biological and environmental contaminant, from complex matrixes by surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) is successfully achieved using amidoximated-polyacrylonitrile (AO-PAN) mats and carboxylated gold (Au) nanostars. SERS detection of small molecules from a sample mixture is traditionally limited by nonspecific adsorption of nontarget species to the metal nanostructures and subsequent variations in both the vibrational frequencies and intensities. Herein, this challenge is overcome using AO-PAN mats to extract uranyl from matrixes ranging in complexity including HEPES buffer, Ca(NO3)2 and NaHCO3 solutions, and synthetic urine. Subsequently, Au nanostars functionalized with carboxyl-terminated alkanethiols are used to enhance the uranyl signal. The detected SERS signals scale with uranyl uptake as confirmed using liquid scintillation counting. SERS vibrational frequencies of uranyl on both hydrated and lyophilized polymer mats are largely independent of sample matrix, indicating less complexity in the uranyl species bound to the surface of the mats vs in solution. These results suggest that matrix effects, which commonly limit the use of SERS for complex sample analysis, are minimized for uranyl detection. The presented synergistic approach for isolating uranyl from complex sample matrixes and enhancing the signal using SERS is promising for real-world sample detection and eliminates the need of radioactive tracers and extensive sample pretreatment steps.
PubMed ID: 29741873
MeSH Terms: Acrylic Resins/chemistry*; Gold/chemistry*; Metal Nanoparticles/chemistry*; Spectrum Analysis, Raman; Surface Properties; Uranium/analysis*