SARS-CoV-2 Detection using Colorimetric Plasmonic Sensors: A Proof-of-Concept Computational Study
preprintposted on 2021-10-19, 09:04 authored by Somen BaidyaSomen Baidya, Ahmed M HassanAhmed M Hassan
Traditional molecular techniques for SARS-CoV-2 viral detection are time-consuming and can exhibit a high probability of false negatives. In this work, we present a computational study of SARS-CoV-2 detection using plasmonic gold nanoparticles. The resonance wavelength of a SARS-CoV-2 virus was recently estimated to be in the near-infrared region. By engineering gold nanospheres to specifically bind with the outer surface of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the resonance frequency can be shifted to the visible range (380 nm – 700 nm). Moreover, we show that broadband absorption will emerge in the visible spectrum when the virus is partially covered with gold nanoparticles at a specific coverage percentage. This broadband absorption can be used to guide the development of an efficient and accurate colorimetric plasmon sensor for COVID-19 detection. Our observation also suggests that this technique is unaffected by the number of protein spikes present on the virus outer surface, hence can pave a potential path for a diagnostic tool independent on the number of protein spikes.