Cabro prenderà parte al 2019 Spring Meeting della European Material Research Society (E-MRS), che si terrà a Nizza dal 27 al 31 marzo prossimi. Nel corso della manifestazione Cabro terrà un intervento dal titolo “SERS detection of Alzheimer’s biomarkers by plasmonic optofluidic platforms”, all’interno del quale saranno presentati i risultati del progetto di ricerca realizzato in collaborazione con l'Istituto di Fisica Applicata Nello Carrara di Sesto Fiorentino.

Di seguito, l’abstract dell’intervento di Cabro al 2019 Spring Meeting dell'E-MRS.

SERS detection of Alzheimer’s biomarkers by plasmonic optofluidic platforms

M. Banchelli1, C. Amicucci1, D. Ciofini1, I. Osticioli1, G. Ghini2, C. D’Andrea1, M. De Angelis1, S. Siano1, R. Pini1, P. Matteini1

1) Istituto di Fisica Applicata Nello Carrara, Via Madonna del Piano 10, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy
2) Cabro Spa via Setteponti 141, 52100 Arezzo, Italy


The elusive nature of the misfolded protein species and their molecular interactions in the neuronal system, which are involved in neurodegenerative disorders (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, dementia with Lewy bodies, etc.), are among the failure causes of the clinical approaches in any diagnosis or treatment attempted so far. Thus current research is extensively devoting efforts in unravelling the basis of the disease onset including the formation mechanism of aberrant protein species and the extreme structural variability in their toxic intermediates.
Surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is well recognized as a powerful tool in detecting biomolecular species present in traces in liquid environments including body fluids. This technique can reveal important structural features such as elements of secondary structures and exposed aminoacidic residues of proteins, which can play a primary role in ruling intra- and inter-molecular interactions in a neuronal environment. The aberrant interactions of toxic misfolded protein intermediates with neurons, specifically with the components of the neuronal membrane, eventually lead to neurodegeneration through a cascade of biochemical processes.
In this work, plasmonic optofluidic platforms of differently shaped silver nanoparticles were designed and fabricated with the aim of setting up SERS systems for label-free direct detection and analysis of proteins and biomarkers associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Typically, silver nanocubes and nanowires were synthesized and assembled through controlled methods to build up 2D patterned nanostructures with intense SERS activity. By means of tunable dewetting processes inside a microwell or a confined drop evaporation over hydrophobic matrices, the interaction pathways between the SERS active area and the analyte can be addressed to enrich the hot spot regions of the system with the target molecules, in turn improving effectiveness and sensitivity. Beyond a sensible and reproducible detection of various model and real biomolecular species these SERS platforms allowed an accurate structural analysis of toxic oligomers of beta-amyloid, which are recognized among the main biomarkers of the Alzheimer’s disease.

[1] M.Banchelli, C. Amicucci, E. Ruggiero, C. D’Andrea, M. Cottat, D. Ciofini, I. Osticioli, G. Ghini, S. Siano, R. Pini, M. de Angelis, P. Matteini, Submitted for publication, (2018).
[2] M. Banchelli, M. de Angelis, C. D’Andrea, R. Pini, P. Matteini, Sci. Rep. 8, 1033, (2018).

Acknowledgments: M.B., C.D’A., A., R.P. and P.M. acknowledge the European Community within the EuroNanoMed3 ERANET cofund (H2020) project “Surface-enhanced Raman scattering with nanophotonic and biomedical amplifying systems for an early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease pathology SPEEDY” (ID 221) and Tuscany Region within the FAR FAS 2014 line A- project “Development of biophotonic sensors for the OGM determination in the environment SENSOGM”