Abstract: We developed an impedance quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) approach with the ability to simultaneously record mass changes and calibrated energy dissipation with high sensitivity using an impedance analyzer. This impedance QCM measures frequency shifts and resistance changes of sensing quartz crystals very stable, accurately, and calibrated, thus yielding quantitative information on mass changes and dissipation. Resistance changes below 0.3 Ω were measured with corresponding dissipation values of 0.01 µU (micro dissipation units). The broadband impedance capabilities allow measurements between 20 Hz and 120 MHz including higher harmonic modes of up to 11th order for a 10 MHz fundamental resonance frequency quartz crystal. We demonstrate the adsorbed mass, calibrated resistance, and quantitative dissipation measurements on two biological systems including the high affinity based avidin-biotin interaction and nano-assemblies of polyelectrolyte layers. The binding affinity of a protein-antibody interaction was determined. The impedance QCM is a versatile and simple method for accurate and calibrated resistance and dissipation measurements with broadband measurement capabilities for higher harmonics measurements.
Abstract: In this study, we report the development of an SPR (Surface Plasmon Resonance) immunosensor for the detection of ampicillin, operating under flow conditions. SPR sensors based on both direct (with the immobilization of the antibody) and competitive (with the immobilization of the antigen) methods did not allow the detection of ampicillin. Therefore, a sandwich-based sensor was developed which showed a good linear response towards ampicillin between 10−3 and 10−1 M, a measurement time of ≤20 min and a high selectivity both towards β-lactam antibiotics and antibiotics of different classes.
Abstract: Ionic gradients play a crucial role in the physiology of the human body, ranging from metabolism in cells to muscle contractions or brain activities. To monitor these ions, inexpensive, label-free chemical sensing devices are needed. Field-effect transistors (FETs) based on silicon (Si) nanowires or nanoribbons (NRs) have a great potential as future biochemical sensors as they allow for the integration in microscopic devices at low production costs. Integrating NRs in dense arrays on a single chip expands the field of applications to implantable electrodes or multifunctional chemical sensing platforms. Ideally, such a platform is capable of detecting numerous species in a complex analyte. Here, we demonstrate the basis for simultaneous sodium and fluoride ion detection with a single sensor chip consisting of arrays of gold-coated SiNR FETs. A microfluidic system with individual channels allows modifying the NR surfaces with self-assembled monolayers of two types of ion receptors sensitive to sodium and fluoride ions. The functionalization procedure results in a differential setup having active fluoride- and sodium-sensitive NRs together with bare gold control NRs on the same chip. Comparing functionalized NRs with control NRs allows the compensation of non-specific contributions from changes in the background electrolyte concentration and reveals the response to the targeted species.
Abstract: Whispering Gallery Mode (WGM) microresonators have recently been studied as a means to achieve real-time label-free detection of biological targets such as virus particles, specific DNA sequences, or proteins. Due to their high quality (Q) factors, WGM resonators can be highly sensitive. A biosensor also needs to be selective, requiring proper functionalization of its surface with the appropriate ligand that will attach the biomolecule of interest. In this paper, WGM microdisks are used as biosensors for detection of Staphylococcus aureus. The microdisks are functionalized with LysK, a phage protein specific for staphylococci at the genus level. A binding event on the surface shifts the resonance peak of the microdisk resonator towards longer wavelengths. This reactive shift can be used to estimate the surface density of bacteria that bind to the surface of the resonator. The limit of detection of a microdisk with a Q-factor around 104 is on the order of 5 pg/mL, corresponding to 20 cells. No binding of Escherichia coli to the resonators is seen, supporting the specificity of the functionalization scheme.
Abstract: Bovine mastitis is the most costly disease for dairy farmers and the most frequent reason for the use of antibiotics in dairy cattle; thus, control measures to detect and prevent mastitis are crucial for dairy farm sustainability. The aim of this study was to develop and validate a sensitive method to magnetically detect Streptococcus agalactiae (a Group B streptococci) and Streptococcus uberis in raw milk samples. Mastitic milk samples were collected aseptically from 44 cows with subclinical mastitis, from 11 Portuguese dairy farms. Forty-six quarter milk samples were selected based on bacterial identification by conventional microbiology. All samples were submitted to PCR analysis. In parallel, these milk samples were mixed with a solution combining specific antibodies and magnetic nanoparticles, to be analyzed using a lab-on-a-chip magnetoresistive cytometer, with microfluidic sample handling. This paper describes a point of care methodology used for detection of bacteria, including analysis of false positive/negative results. This immunological recognition was able to detect bacterial presence in samples spiked above 100 cfu/mL, independently of antibody and targeted bacteria used in this work. Using PCR as a reference, this method correctly identified 73% of positive samples for streptococci species with an anti-S. agalactiae antibody, and 41% of positive samples for an anti-GB streptococci antibody.
Abstract: The concepts of transistor recording of electroactive cells are considered, when the response is determined by a current-induced voltage in the electrolyte due to cellular activity. The relationship to traditional transistor recording, with an interface-induced response due to interactions with the open gate oxide, is addressed. For the geometry of a cell-substrate junction, the theory of a planar core-coat conductor is described with a one-compartment approximation. The fast electrical relaxation of the junction and the slow change of ion concentrations are pointed out. On that basis, various recording situations are considered and documented by experiments. For voltage-gated ion channels under voltage clamp, the effects of a changing extracellular ion concentration and the enhancement/depletion of ion conductances in the adherent membrane are addressed. Inhomogeneous ion conductances are crucial for transistor recording of neuronal action potentials. For a propagating action potential, the effects of an axon-substrate junction and the surrounding volume conductor are distinguished. Finally, a receptor-transistor-sensor is described, where the inhomogeneity of a ligand–activated ion conductance is achieved by diffusion of the agonist and inactivation of the conductance. Problems with regard to a development of reliable biosensors are mentioned.