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Micromachines 2017, 8(3), 71; doi:10.3390/mi8030071

Paper-Based Microfluidic Device with a Gold Nanosensor to Detect Arsenic Contamination of Groundwater in Bangladesh

Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, 2000 Simcoe Street North, Oshawa, ON L1H 7K4, Canada
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Academic Editors: Frank A. Gomez and Carlos D. Garcia
Received: 9 January 2017 / Revised: 21 February 2017 / Accepted: 23 February 2017 / Published: 1 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Paper Microfluidics: Fundamental Studies and Applications)
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Abstract

In this paper, we present a microfluidic paper-based analytical device (μPAD) with a gold nanosensor functionalized with α-lipoic acid and thioguanine (Au–TA–TG) to detect whether the arsenic level of groundwater from hand tubewells in Bangladesh is above or below the World Health Organization (WHO) guideline level of 10 μg/L. We analyzed the naturally occurring metals present in Bangladesh groundwater and assessed the interference with the gold nanosensor. A method was developed to prevent interference from alkaline metals found in Bangladesh groundwater (Ca, Mg, K and Na) by increasing the pH level on the μPADs to 12.1. Most of the heavy metals present in the groundwater (Ni, Mn, Cd, Pb, and Fe II) did not interfere with the μPAD arsenic tests; however, Fe III was found to interfere, which was also prevented by increasing the pH level on the μPADs to 12.1. The μPAD arsenic tests were tested with 24 groundwater samples collected from hand tubewells in three different districts in Bangladesh: Shirajganj, Manikganj, and Munshiganj, and the predictions for whether the arsenic levels were above or below the WHO guideline level agreed with the results obtained from laboratory testing. The μPAD arsenic test is the first paper-based test validated using Bangladesh groundwater samples and capable of detecting whether the arsenic level in groundwater is above or below the WHO guideline level of 10 μg/L, which is a step towards enabling the villagers who collect and consume the groundwater to test their own sources and make decisions about where to obtain the safest water. View Full-Text
Keywords: microfluidic paper-based analytical devices; arsenic; gold nanosensor; nanoparticles; Bangladesh; groundwater; drinking water microfluidic paper-based analytical devices; arsenic; gold nanosensor; nanoparticles; Bangladesh; groundwater; drinking water
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MDPI and ACS Style

Chowdury, M.A.; Walji, N.; Mahmud, M.A.; MacDonald, B.D. Paper-Based Microfluidic Device with a Gold Nanosensor to Detect Arsenic Contamination of Groundwater in Bangladesh. Micromachines 2017, 8, 71.

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