Nanometerial-based optical nanoprobes have been extensively developed because of their high sensitivity, good specificity, and potential for easy quantification of species in chemical and biological analysis. With the development of nanotechnology, various kinds of nanomaterials with novel optical properties have heen generated, laying the foundation of optical nanoprobes. By further integrating receptors (chemical ligand, aptamer, molecular imprinting polymer, etc.), the information of binding specific targets will transform into analytically optical signals by employing different detection techniques including colorimetry/UV-Vis spectra, fluorometry and surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). In this presentation, firstly, we introduced a simple, rapid and ultrasensitive SERS nanosensor for mercury ion (Hg<sup>2+</sup>) detection based on the 4-mercaptopyridine (4-MPY) functionalized silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in the presence of spermine; then, a novel colorimetric nanosensor for mercury species was developed for the first time due to the analyte-induced aggregation of gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) with the assistance of a thiol-containing ligand of diethyldithiocarbamate (DDTC); finally, the sensitive and selective recognition and detection of trypsin was realized in a SERS strategy by using anti-aggregation of 4-MPY-functionalized AgNPs on the basis of the interaction between protamine and trypsin.