On the substrate carrying a sub-wavelength grating covered with a thin metal layer, a fluorescent dye-labeled cell was observed by fluorescence microscope. The fluorescence intensity was more than 20 times greater than that on an optically flat glass substrate. Such a great fluorescence enhancement from labeled cells bound to the grating substrate was due to the excitation by grating coupled surface plasmon resonance. The application of a grating substrate to two-dimensional detection and fluorescence microscopy appears to offer a promising method of taking highly sensitive fluorescence images.
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