Localized surface plasmon resonance aptasensor for the highly sensitive direct detection of cortisol in human saliva

Seongjae Jo, Wonseok Lee, Joohyung Park, Woong Kim, Woochang Kim, Gyudo Lee, Heon Jeong Lee, Junghwa Hong, Jinsung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Cortisol, which is a stress biomarker that causes various mental disorders, is found in sweat, saliva, blood, and urine. Because mental disorders resulting from stress are a silent contributor to various diseases, the detection of cortisol level is an important step in their prevention. Here, we developed a highly sensitive, localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) aptasensor for the direct detection of cortisol in saliva. The LSPR aptasensor was constructed using gold nanoparticles of different sizes. Subsequently, the surface of the LSPR substrate was immobilized using an aptamer for capturing cortisol. The detection capability of the LSPR aptasensor was compared with that of the antibody- immobilized sensor. The LSPR aptasensor displayed excellent detection capability for a wide range of cortisol concentrations extending from 0.1–1000 nM with a detection limit of 0.1 nM. In addition, the LSPR aptasensor was able to selectively detect cortisol among other substances with similar chemical structures (e.g., cortisone, corticosterone, progesterone, and triamcinolone). These results indicate that the LSPR aptasensor may be used for the highly sensitive and selective detection of cortisol in salivary samples.

Original languageEnglish
Article number127424
JournalSensors and Actuators, B: Chemical
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Feb 1


  • Aptasensor
  • Cortisol
  • Gold nanoparticles
  • Human saliva
  • Localized surface plasmon resonance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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