Electrochemical (Bio)Sensors with improved performances for Biomedical Applications

Metal Nanoparticles and Carbon-Based Nanomaterials for Improved Performances of Electrochemical (Bio)Sensors with Biomedical Applications

 A “real-time” biosensor includes a biological recognition receptor (such as an antibody, enzyme, nucleic acid or whole cell) and a transducer to convert the biological binding event to a detectable signal, which is read out indicating both the presence and concentration of the analyte molecule.In nano(bio)sensors, nanoparticles (NPs) are incorporated into the (bio)sensor design by attachment to the suitably modified platforms. For this purpose, metal nanoparticles have many advantageous properties making them useful in the transducer component of the (bio)sensors. Gold, silver and platinum NPs have been the most popular ones, each form of these metallic NPs exhibiting special surface and interface features, which significantly improve the biocompatibility and transduction of the (bio)sensor compared to the same process in the absence of these NPs. The main types of NPs used for electrochemical (bio)sensors design, especially screen-printed electrodes, with their specific medical application due to their improved analytical performances and miniaturized form is presented.

Schematic representation of main synthesis methods of metal NPs and carbon-based nanomaterials.
Some examples of commercially available screen-printed electrodes (from different manufacturers:

This comprehensive review is focused on the main types of metal NPs and carbon-based nanomaterials used for electrochemical (bio)sensors design, especially screen-printed electrodes, with their specific biomedical applications, improved analytical performances and miniaturized form.Nanotechnological approaches will extend the limits of currently employed (bio)sensors and, moreover, they will open a new window toward personalized medicine, offering new solutions to the main challenges in the diagnostic and therapeutic fields. Future research should focus on some improvements concerning the nanomaterials characteristics and the sensor design in order to enhance their performances with multi-disciplinary efforts. The real sample analysis with more enhanced sensitivity and selectivity is still a challenge for researchers aiming the validation of the electrochemical nano(bio)sensors in comparison with the traditional analytical procedures. The reproducibility is another key aspect which needs to be solved for large-scale production of electrochemical sensors and their introduction on commercial market. The miniaturized, portable or wearable sensors which can perform on-site and real-time analysis will gain tremendous importance at the commercial level, with a huge impact on the health system.

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