Publication: Research - peer-review › Journal article – Annual report year: 2009
The article presents a noninvasive approach to the study of erythrocyte properties by means of a comparative analysis of signals obtained by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) and resonance Raman spectroscopy (RS). We report step-by-step the procedure for preparing experimental samples containing erythrocytes in their normal physiological environment in a mixture of colloid solution with silver nanoparticles and the procedure for the optimization of SERS conditions to achieve high signal enhancement without affecting the properties of living erythrocytes. By means of three independent techniques, we demonstrate that under the proposed conditions a colloid solution of silver nanoparticles does not affect the properties of erythrocytes. For the first time to our knowledge, we describe how to use the SERS-RS approach to study two populations of hemoglobin molecules inside an intact living erythrocyte: submembrane and cytosolic hemoglobin (Hb(sm) and Hb(c)). We show that the conformation of Hbsm differs from the conformation of Hbc. This finding has an important application, as the comparative study of Hbsm and Hbc could be successfully used in biomedical research and diagnostic tests.
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