Human IgG interactions with surface bound protein A are monitored label-free using microinterferometric backscatter detection. An electromagnetic wave-based model is developed and used to quantitatively describe the change in interference pattern as a consequence of the molecular interaction with the affinity layer on the fused silica capillary. Within the framework of the model it is of paramount importance to establish a valid stop criterion for the infinite summations involved in the fringe pattern computations. The high sensitivity towards surface changes, ease of changing the surface chemistry to other specific interacting layers, and simplicity of the optical sensor make this technique a powerful tool in biosensing. (c) 2006 American Institute of Physics.