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Sensors 2015, 15(8), 18887-18900; doi:10.3390/s150818887

Development of a Novel, Low-Cost, Disposable Wooden Pencil Graphite Electrode for Use in the Determination of Antioxidants and Other Biological Compounds

Department of Science, Augustana Campus, University of Alberta, 4901-46th Ave, Camrose, AB T4V 2R3, Canada
These authors contributed equally to this work.
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Alexander Star and Kagan Kerman
Received: 26 June 2015 / Revised: 18 July 2015 / Accepted: 27 July 2015 / Published: 31 July 2015
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Abstract

The development of portable sensors that can be used outside the lab is an active area of research in the electroanalytical field. A major focus of such research is the development of low-cost electrodes for use in these sensors. Current electrodes, such as glassy-carbon electrodes (GCEs), are costly and require time-consuming preparation. Alternatives have been proposed, including mechanical pencil-lead electrodes (MPEs). However, MPEs themselves possess numerous drawbacks, particularly structural fragility. In this paper, we present a novel pencil-graphite electrode (PGE) fabricated from a regular HB#2 pencil. This PGE is a simple, disposable, extremely low-cost alternative to GCEs ($0.30 per PGE, vs. $190 + per GCE), and possesses the structural stability that MPEs lack. PGEs were characterized by square-wave voltammetry of ferricyanide, gallic acid, uric acid, dopamine, and several foodstuffs. In all cases, PGEs demonstrated sensitivities comparable or superior to those of the GCE and MPE (LOD = 5.62 × 104 M PGE, 4.80 × 104 M GCE, 2.93 × 104 M MPE). Signal areas and peak heights were typically four to ten times larger for the PGE relative to the GCE. View Full-Text
Keywords: antioxidant; biosensor; glassy carbon electrode; pencil graphite electrode; square-wave voltammetry antioxidant; biosensor; glassy carbon electrode; pencil graphite electrode; square-wave voltammetry
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kariuki, J.; Ervin, E.; Olafson, C. Development of a Novel, Low-Cost, Disposable Wooden Pencil Graphite Electrode for Use in the Determination of Antioxidants and Other Biological Compounds. Sensors 2015, 15, 18887-18900.

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