Mussel-inspired hydrogels for fast fabrication of flexible SERS tape for point-of-care testing of beta-blockers


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The flexible surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) platform has ceaselessly propelled the development of point-of-care testing (POCT) in diverse fields. Herein, we report a facile strategy for the SERS-chemometric analysis of four beta-blockers (bisoprolol, metoprolol, acebutolol and esmolol) based on a super-sticky mussel-inspired hydrogel SERS tape. The surface morphology and mechanical properties of the hydrogel tape can be easily controlled by adjusting the compositional ratio. The optimized tape with excellent toughness and adhesiveness allows efficient collection of analytes through a simple "paste and peel off" approach, further by spraying with silver nanoparticles using a household sprayer to instantly assemble a flexible SERS substrate, the analytes can then detected by a portable Raman spectrometer. This POCT strategy enables the identification and discrimination of four similar beta-blockers with high sensitivity and accuracy in combination with the statistical algorithms. The developed SERS tape is finally utilized for the recognition of beta-blockers in simulated urine solution, which realizes a limit of detection of 1.0 ng mL(-1), revealing a promising potential of this SERS-based POCT for the clinical detection of doping abuse.
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