Nanomedicine : nanotechnology, biology, and medicine

Chemo-spectroscopic sensor for carboxyl terminus overexpressed in carcinoma cell membrane.

PMID 25933691


Certain carboxyl groups of the plasma membrane are involved in tumorgenesis processes. A gold core-hydroxyapatite shell (AuHA) nanocomposite is introduced as chemo-spectroscopic sensor to monitor these carboxyl groups of the cell membrane. Hydroxyapatite (HA) plays the role both of a chemical detector and of a biocompatible Raman marker. The principle of detection is based on chemical interaction between the hydroxyl groups of the HA and the carboxyl terminus of the proteins. The AuHA exhibits a surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) signal at 954 cm(-1) which can be used for its localization. The bio-sensing capacity of AuHA towards human skin epidermoid carcinoma (A431) and Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell lines is investigated using Raman microspectroscopic imaging. The localization of AuHA on cells is correlated with scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy and structured illumination fluorescence microscopy. This qualitative approach is a step towards a quantitative study of the proteins terminus. This method would enable further studies on the molecular profiling of the plasma membrane, in an attempt to provide accurate cell identification. Using a gold core-hydroxyapatite shell (AuHA) nanocomposite, the authors in this paper showed the feasibility of detecting and differentiating cell surface molecules by surface enhanced Raman scattering.