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  • Received: Aug. 9, 2020

    Accepted: Oct. 2, 2020

    Posted: Oct. 30, 2020

    Published Online: Oct. 30, 2020

    The Author Email: Zhou Yunke (, Yuan Zhiyi (, Gong Xuerui (, Birowosuto Muhammad D. (, Dang Cuong (, Chen Yu-Cheng (

    DOI: 10.1117/1.AP.2.6.066002

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    Yunke Zhou, Zhiyi Yuan, Xuerui Gong, Muhammad D. Birowosuto, Cuong Dang, Yu-Cheng Chen. Dynamic photonic barcodes for molecular detection based on cavity-enhanced energy transfer[J]. Advanced Photonics, 2020, 2(6): 066002

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Advanced Photonics, Vol. 2, Issue 6, 066002 (2020)

Dynamic photonic barcodes for molecular detection based on cavity-enhanced energy transfer 

Yunke Zhou1,†, Zhiyi Yuan1, Xuerui Gong1, Muhammad D. Birowosuto1,2, Cuong Dang1, and Yu-Cheng Chen1,3,*

Author Affiliations

  • 1Nanyang Technological University, School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Singapore
  • 3Nanyang Technological University, School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Singapore


Optical barcodes have demonstrated a great potential in multiplexed bioassays and cell tracking for their distinctive spectral fingerprints. The vast majority of optical barcodes were designed to identify a specific target by fluorescence emission spectra, without being able to characterize dynamic changes in response to analytes through time. To overcome these limitations, the concept of the bioresponsive dynamic photonic barcode was proposed by exploiting interfacial energy transfer between a microdroplet cavity and binding molecules. Whispering-gallery modes resulting from cavity-enhanced energy transfer were therefore converted into photonic barcodes to identify binding activities, in which more than trillions of distinctive barcodes could be generated by a single droplet. Dynamic spectral barcoding was achieved by a significant improvement in terms of signal-to-noise ratio upon binding to target molecules. Theoretical studies and experiments were conducted to elucidate the effect of different cavity sizes and analyte concentrations. Time-resolved fluorescence lifetime was implemented to investigate the role of radiative and non-radiative energy transfer. Finally, microdroplet photonic barcodes were employed in biodetection to exhibit great potential in fulfilling biomedical applications.


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