A colorimetric sensor, based on the synergistic coordination effect on a gold nanoparticle (AuNP) platform has been developed for the determination of creatinine. The sensor selects citrate stabilized AuNPs as a platform, polyethylene glycol (PEG) as a decorator, and Hg2+ as a linkage to form a colorimetric probe system (PEG/Hg2−–AuNPs). By forming hydrogen bond between the oxygen-containing functional groups of PEG and citrate ions on the surface of AuNPs, this probe shows good stability. PEG coordinated with Hg2+ synergistically and specifically on the surface of dispersed AuNPs, and the existence of creatinine could induce the aggregation of AuNPs with a corresponding color change and an obvious absorption peak shift within 5 min. This PEG/Hg2+–AuNPs probe towards creatinine shows high sensitivity, and a good linear relationship (R2 = 0.9948) was obtained between A620–522 nm and creatinine concentration, which can achieve the quantitative calculations of creatinine. The limit of detection (LOD) of this PEG/Hg2+–AuNPs probe was estimated to be 9.68 nM, lower than that of many other reported methods (Supplementary Materials Table S3). Importantly, the sensitive probe can be successfully applied in a urine simulating fluid sample and a bovine serum sample. The unique synergistic coordination sensing mechanism applied in the designation of this probe further improves its high selectivity and specificity for the detection of creatinine. Thus, the proposed probe may give new inspirations for colorimetric detection of creatinine and other biomolecules.
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