Gold Nanolenses Self-Assembled by DNA Origami

Christian Heck, Julia Prinz, André Dathe, Virginia Merk, Ondrej Stranik, Wolfgang Fritzsche, Janina Kneipp, Ilko Bald*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nanolenses are self-similar chains of metal nanoparticles, which can theoretically provide extremely high field enhancements. Yet, the complex structure renders their synthesis challenging and has hampered closer analyses so far. Here, DNA origami is used to self-assemble 10, 20, and 60 nm gold nanoparticles as plasmonic gold nanolenses (AuNLs) in solution and in billions of copies. Three different geometrical arrangements are assembled, and for each of the three designs, surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) capabilities of single AuNLs are assessed. For the design which shows the best properties, SERS signals from the two different internal gaps are compared by selectively placing probe dyes. The highest Raman enhancement is found for the gap between the small and medium nanoparticle, which is indicative of a cascaded field enhancement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1123-1130
Number of pages8
JournalACS Photonics
Issue number5
StatePublished - 17 May 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • DNA origami
  • SERS
  • gold nanoparticles
  • nanolenses
  • plasmonics


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