We have performed highly sensitive surface plasmon resonance (SPR) detection by colocalizing the evanescent near-fields and target molecular distribution. The colocalization is based on oblique metal evaporation to form nanogaps of a size under 100 nm without using electron-beam lithography. The concept was demonstrated by detecting siloxane-based biotin/streptavidin interactions. 50-nm nanogaps produced the largest amplification of optical signatures and two orders of magnitude enhancement of sensitivity over conventional thin film-based measurements. The enhancement is associated with efficient overlap of localized near-fields and target. Colocalized detection scheme is expected to provide clues to molecular sensitivity for SPR biosensing.

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