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Scientists found a way to protect optical fiber in biomedical applications from biomolecules

Scientists from Russia, the Czech Republic, and the United States have proposed a new way of protecting the surface of optical fibers from biological molecules. Such optical fibers are promising for use in biomedical applications, including biosensors, the press service of Tomsk Polytechnic University (TPU) informed.
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«Proteins stick to the surface of an optical fiber line and thus prevent it from transforming the signal. To solve the problem we have developed a new method of modifying the surface of a fiber by making it bio-inert — we covered a fiber with highly hydrophobic organic compounds so that they do not interact with proteins in aqueous solutions,» Pavel Postnikov, one of the authors of the study and associate professor of the Research School of Chemistry and Applied Biomedical Sciences is quoted by the press service as saying.

Postnikov explained that a thin layer of gold is sprayed on the fiber to form a coating, then light is directed through it so that plasmon resonance is excited, due to which the iodonium salt decomposes, organic radicals are formed and bind firmly to the fiber surface. Experiments have shown that after the modification the fiber ceases to interact with molecules.

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