Plasmonic imaging and detection of single DNA molecules

Hui Yu, Xiaonan Shan, Shaopeng Wang, Hongyuan Chen, Nongjian Tao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Scopus citations


The capability of imaging and detecting single DNA molecules is critical in the study, analysis, and applications of DNA. Fluorescence imaging is a widely used method, but it suffers from blinking and photobleaching, and fluorescence tags may block or affect binding sites on DNA. We report on label-free imaging of single DNA molecules with a differential plasmonic imaging technique. The technique produces high contrast images due to the scattering of surface plasmonic waves by the molecules and the removal of background noises and interference patterns, allowing for quantitative analysis of individual DNA molecules. Simulation of the images based on a scattering model shows good agreement with the experiment. We further demonstrate optical mapping of single DNA molecules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3427-3433
Number of pages7
JournalACS nano
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 22 2014


  • label-free imaging
  • optical mapping
  • single molecule analysis
  • surface plasmon resonance microscopy
  • λ-DNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Plasmonic imaging and detection of single DNA molecules'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this