Novel Amplification-Free Methods to Detect Viruses

Oct 27, 2021
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About This Webinar
Viral pathogens can transmit undetected from person to person, often without apparent symptoms, facilitating rapid spread and underscoring the importance of the development and deployment of infectious disease surveillance systems to test, isolate, and trace the viral spread at early stages. Rapid evolution in RNA viruses leads to the ability of some of them to jump from species to species, with substantial repercussions to patients and health care systems worldwide. Detecting viruses and understanding viral evolution therefore hold significant importance because of the wide impact of viruses on global health, new vaccine and drug design, and the prediction of new pathogenesis.

Laura Fabris discusses her group's results on the implementation of surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) probes for the identification and quantification of viral RNA both in liquid and in intact individual cells, and for monitoring the onset of mutations. She compares the SERS results with those enabled by fluorescence transduction on similar probes. SERS probes are promising because they are uniquely suited to provide response on population outliers that could be indicative of a superspreader behavior, and because they can be easily adapted to target any viral RNA, to enable the implementation of effective diagnostic platforms with high sensitivity and throughput.

***This presentation premiered during the 2021 BioPhotonics Conference. For more information on Photonics Media conferences, visit 

About the presenter:
Laura FabrisLaura Fabris, Ph.D., is associate professor of materials science and engineering at Rutgers University. Prior to joining the university in 2009, she was a postdoc in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Fabris earned her bachelor's, master's, and doctorate degrees in chemistry from the University of Padua in Italy. Her research aims at rationally designing plasmonic nanomaterials, employing both experimental and computational approaches, to address biologically and medically relevant questions and, most recently, to design efficient nanostructured photocatalysts.
spectroscopyBiophotonicssurface-enhanced Raman spectroscopyRaman spectroscopySERSvirus detection
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