Infrared Spectroscopy with a Fiber-Coupled Quantum Cascade Laser for Attenuated Total Reflection Measurements Towards Biomedical Applications
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionSensors. 2019, . 10.3390/s19235130
The development of rapid and accurate biomedical laser spectroscopy systems in the mid-infrared has been enabled by the commercial availability of external-cavity quantum cascade lasers (EC-QCLs). EC-QCLs are a preferable alternative to benchtop instruments such as Fourier transform infrared spectrometers for sensor development as they are small and have high spectral power density. They also allow for the investigation of multiple analytes due to their broad tuneability and through the use of multivariate analysis. This article presents an in vitro investigation with two fiber-coupled measurement setups based on attenuated total reflection spectroscopy and direct transmission spectroscopy for sensing. A pulsed EC-QCL (1200–900 cm −1 ) was used for measurements of glucose and albumin in aqueous solutions, with lactate and urea as interferents. This analyte composition was chosen as an example of a complex aqueous solution with relevance for biomedical sensors. Glucose concentrations were determined in both setup types with root-mean-square error of cross-validation (RMSECV) of less than 20 mg/dL using partial least-squares (PLS) regression. These results demonstrate accurate analyte measurements, and are promising for further development of fiber-coupled, miniaturised in vivo sensors based on mid-infrared spectroscopy.