Surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy and its application to molecular and cellular analysis

Yun Suk Huh, Aram J. Chung, David Erickson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

189 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we review the state-of-the-art in surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) based optical detection techniques with an application focus on cancer diagnostics. As we describe herein, SERS has several analytical, biological and engineering advantages over other methods including extremely high sensitivity, inherent molecular specificity of unlabeled targets, and narrow spectral bands. We review advances in both in vitro and in vivo applications of SERS and examine how technical issues with the technology are being addressed. A special technology focus is given to emerging optofluidic devices which aim to merge microfluidic and optical detection technologies into simple packages. We conclude with a brief discussion of some of the emerging challenges in the field and some of the approaches that are likely to enhance their application.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)285-297
Number of pages13
JournalMicrofluidics and Nanofluidics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer
  • Optical biosensors
  • Optofluidics
  • SERS
  • Surface enhanced Raman scattering
  • Tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Materials Chemistry


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