The highly sensitive determination of serotonin by using gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) with a localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) absorption wavelength in the visible region†
The development of improved methods for the synthesis of monodisperse gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) is of high priority because they can be used as substrates for surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) applications relating to biological lipids. Herein, Au NPs have been successfully synthesized via a seed-mediated growth method. The LSPR peak is controlled via adjusting the gold nanoseed component, and different fabrication methods were studied to establish the effect of sonication time on NP size. The simple, facile, and room-temperature method is based on a conventional ultrasonic bath, which leads to ultrasonic energy effects on the size and morphology of the Au NPs. This research offers new opportunities for the production of highly monodispersed spherical Au NPs without the use of a magnetic stirrer method, as evidenced by ultraviolet-visible reflectance spectra and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis. SEM images indicate that the spherical Au NP colloidal particles are stable and reliable, which paves the way for their use as a nanostructured biosensor platform that can be exploited for multiple applications, for example, in materials science, sensing, catalysis, medicine, food safety, biomedicine, etc. The highest enhancement factor that could be achieved in terms of the SERS enhancement activity of these Au NP arrays was determined using 10−9 M serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) as the Raman probe molecules.