SERS detection of the biomarker hydrogen cyanide from Pseudomonas aeruginosa cultures isolated from cystic fibrosis patients

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Abstract

Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the primary cause of chronic airway infections in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. Persistent infections are seen from the first P. aeruginosa culture in about 75% of young CF patients, and it is important to discover new ways to detect P. aeruginosa at an earlier stage. The P. aeruginosa biomarker hydrogen cyanide (HCN) contains a triple bond, which is utilized in this study because of the resulting characteristic C≡N peak at 2135 cm-1 in a Raman spectrum. The Raman signal was enhanced by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) on a Au-coated SERS substrate. After long-term infection, a mutation in the patho-adaptive lasR gene can alter the expression of HCN, which is why it is sometimes not possible to detect HCN in the breath of chronically infected patients. Four P. aeruginosa reference strains and 12 clinical P. aeruginosa strains isolated from CF children were evaluated, and HCN was clearly detected from overnight cultures of all wild type-like isolates and half of the later isolates from the same patients. The clinical impact could be that P. aeruginosa infections could be detected at an earlier stage, because daily breath sampling with an immediate output could be possible with a point-of-care SERS device.
Original languageEnglish
Article number45264
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
Number of pages7
ISSN2045-2322
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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