Reflection-mode TERS on Insulin Amyloid Fibrils with Top-Visual AFM Probes

Manola Moretti*, Remo Proietti Zaccaria, Emiliano Descrovi, Gobind Das, Marco Leoncini, Carlo Liberale, Francesco de Angelis, Enzo Di Fabrizio

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy provides chemical information while raster scanning samples with topographical detail. The coupling of atomic force microscopy and Raman spectroscopy in top illumination optical setup is a powerful configuration to resolve nanometer structures while collecting reflection mode backscattered signal. Here, we theoretically calculate the field enhancement generated by TER spectroscopy with top illumination geometry and we apply the technique to the characterization of insulin amyloid fibrils. We experimentally confirm that this technique is able to enhance the Raman signal of the polypeptide chain by a factor of 105, thus revealing details down to few molecules resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-33
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments The authors gratefully acknowledge support from European Projects SMD FP7 no. CP-FP 229375-2; Nanoantenna FP7 no. 241818; FOCUS FP7 no. 270483.


  • Amyloid fibrils
  • Field enhancement
  • Raman spectroscopy
  • TERS
  • Top-illumination setup

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry


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