We report preliminary results on the development of multilayer coated long period gratings (LPGs) for life science applications. The dip-coating technique and a solvent/nonsolvent strategy were exploited to deposit double-layer polymeric film onto a LPG. A primary coating of atactic polystyrene was used as high refractive index layer to tune the working point of the device in the so-called transition region thus achieving remarkable surrounding medium refractive index sensitivity. A secondary layer of atactic poly(methyl methacrylate-co-methacrylic acid) containing functional carboxyl groups, characterized by a lower refractive index, was deposited onto the primary coating in order to have the desired functional groups on the surface of the device. Commonly used covalent immobilization procedure, NHS/EDC coupling method, was exploited to link streptavidin on the surface of the functionalized coated device. Finally, real-time detection of biotinylated bovine serum albumin affinity binding on immobilized streptavidin was performed by monitoring the shift of the LPG attenuation bands.
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