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Surface desensitization of polarimetric waveguide interferometers

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4 Author(s)
Worth, C. ; Dept. of Phys., Boston Univ., MA, USA ; Goldberg, B.B. ; Ruane, M. ; Unlu, M.S.

Nonspecific surface binding of small protein molecules presents a major obstacle to surface biosensing techniques attempting to detect very low concentrations (< 1 pg/mm2) of large biological objects such as cells and bacteria. A new method for selective desensitization of a polarimetric waveguide interferometer eliminates the background noise from nonspecific surface binding. We demonstrate the ability to tune the phase sensitivity of a waveguide interferometer as a function of the distance of the biological or chemical analyte from the waveguide surface. This makes possible a sensor that has zero sensitivity at a particular distance where nonspecific surface binding occurs without significantly reducing the sensitivity to target larger biological species

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Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:7 ,  Issue: 6 )