One of the major goals of medicine is the development of portable diagnostic tools. Recent advances in nano-magnetism, reviewed in this talk, might allow the development of efficient lab-on-a-chip portable devices.
- Regarding on-chip manipulation of biological matter, we proposed and used a special type of domain walls in magnetic-nanostructures as moveable “magnetic-nanotweezers” [1, 2]. We have demonstrated precise and robust manipulation of magnetic nanoparticles [3,4] and bio-entities (proteins and cells) [1,5] labeled with magnetic nanoparticles in solution with nm-scale precision by means of an externally applied magnetic field, which allowed for remote on-chip operation.
- Regarding biosensing, plasmonic nanostructures are currently attracting great attention due to their intrinsically small size and localized sensing volume/area. Typical plasmonic sensing utilizes the localized surface-plasmon (LSP) resonance shift due to the local refractive index change upon molecular adsorption. We have shown that the use of ferromagnetic nanostructures allows for a phase sensitive detection of LSPs shift, enabled by their magneto-optical activity , with vastly improved performances and sensitivity down to the single molecule level . We are developing further this approach and its integration into practically applicable biomedical sensing devices . More specifically, we are exploring the use of specially designed “janus” particles made of 100-nm-diamter silica nanospheres half covered with multilayers of Fe/Au or Co/Au. They display simultaneous and large anisotropic magnetic and plasmonic properties to be conveniently used in our recently proposed opto-magnetic approach  that is being already exploited in commercialized portable device (BluSense Diagnostics, http://www.blusense-diagnostics.com/).
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 M. Donolato et al., Adv. Mater. 25, 623 (2013)
 Torti et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 101, 142405 (2013)
 A. Sarella et al., Adv. Mater. 26, 2384 (2014)
 M. Donolato et al., Lab Chip 11, 2976 (2011)
N. Maccaferri et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 111, 167401 (2013)
 N. Maccaferri et al., Nat. Commun. 6, 6150 (2015); R. Verre et al., Nanoscale 8, 10576 (2016)
 M. Donolato et al., Anal. Chem. 87, 1622 (2015); J. Yang et al., Biosensors and Bioelectronics 75, 396 (2016)
Paolo Vavassori, "Applications of nano-magnetism to biosensing (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10510, Frontiers in Biological Detection: From Nanosensors to Systems X, 1051007 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 28, 2018; Published: 15 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2293069.5752191713001.
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