A promising label-free approach for the analysis of genetic material by means of detecting the hybridization of polynucleotides with electromagnetic waves at terahertz (THz) frequencies is presented. Using an integrated waveguide approach, incorporating resonant THz structures as sample carriers and transducers for the analysis of the DNA molecules, we achieve a sensitivity down to femtomolar levels. The approach is demonstrated with time-domain ultrafast techniques based on femtosecond laser pulses for generating and electro-optically detecting broadband THz signals, although the principle can certainly be transferred to other THz technologies.
© 2002 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: August 2, 2001
Revised Manuscript: October 31, 2001
Published: April 1, 2002
Michael Nagel, Peter Haring Bolivar, Martin Brucherseifer, Heinrich Kurz, Anja Bosserhoff, and Reinhard Büttner, "Integrated planar terahertz resonators for femtomolar sensitivity label-free detection of DNA hybridization," Appl. Opt. 41, 2074-2078 (2002)