Special Issue "Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications"

A special issue of Micromachines (ISSN 2072-666X). This special issue belongs to the section "B:Biology and Biomedicine".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 December 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Zeynep Altintas
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Chemistry, Technische Universität Berlin, 10623 Berlin, Germany
Interests: diagnostics; micro-fluidics and lab-on-a-chip devices; sensor applications in medical diagnosis, chemistry, food safety and biotechnology; nanomaterials in health care diagnostics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Biosensors and micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) have witnessed rapid development and enormous interest over the past decades. Constant advancement in diagnostic, medical and chemical applications has been demonstrated with regard to several platforms and tools. Biosensors, relying on various sensing platforms such as surface plasmon resonance, piezoelectric, electrochemical, lab-on-a-chip, and paper, have been broadly used in research.

Covering various excitation and readout schemes, MEMS devices transduce physical parameter changes, such as mass, temperature, or stress, caused by alterations in anticipated measurands, to electrical signals that can be further processed. Common examples of MEMS platforms include accelerometers, magnetic field sensors, pressure sensors, radiation sensors, microphones, and particulate matter sensors.

The aim of this Special Issue is to cover biosensors and MEMS-based diagnostic applications in health care, chemistry, biotechnology, food safety and environmental monitoring. We invite full research papers, review articles and communications covering related topics included in the keywords below. We would like to collect up-to-date research from emerging investigators and pioneers and a collection of comprehensive reviews from leading experts in the field.

Dr. Zeynep Altintas
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Micromachines is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • MEMS
  • MEMS arrays
  • MEMS modelling
  • Biosensors
    • Electrochemical sensors
    • SPR sensors
    • Piezoelectric sensors
    • Lab-on-a chip platforms
    • Microfluidics devices
    • Paper-based sensors
  • Sensor and MEMS applications
    • Diagnostics
    • Food safety
    • Biotechnology
    • Environmental monitoring
    • Drug research
    • Nanomaterials
    • Health care

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Editorial

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Editorial
Editorial for the Special Issue on Biosensors and MEMS-Based Diagnostic Applications
Micromachines 2021, 12(3), 229; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi12030229 - 25 Feb 2021
Viewed by 462
Abstract
Biosensors and micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) have witnessed rapid development and enormous interest over the past decades [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)

Research

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Article
Wearable Contact Lens Sensor for Non-Invasive Continuous Monitoring of Intraocular Pressure
Micromachines 2021, 12(2), 108; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi12020108 - 22 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 728
Abstract
Intraocular pressure (IOP) is an essential indicator of the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma. IOP has an apparent physiological rhythm, and it often reaches its peak value at night. To avoid missing the peak value at night and sample the entire rhythm cycle, [...] Read more.
Intraocular pressure (IOP) is an essential indicator of the diagnosis and treatment of glaucoma. IOP has an apparent physiological rhythm, and it often reaches its peak value at night. To avoid missing the peak value at night and sample the entire rhythm cycle, the continuous monitoring of IOP is urgently needed. A wearable contact lens IOP sensor based on a platinum (Pt) strain gauge is fabricated by the micro-electro-mechanical (MEMS) process. The structure and parameters of the strain gauge are optimized to improve the sensitivity and temperature stability. Tests on an eyeball model indicate that the IOP sensor has a high sensitivity of 289.5 μV/mmHg and excellent dynamic cycling performance at different speeds of IOP variation. The temperature drift coefficient of the sensor is 33.4 μV/°C. The non-invasive IOP sensor proposed in this report exhibits high sensitivity and satisfactory stability, promising a potential in continuous IOP monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Article
Geometric Understanding of Local Fluctuation Distribution of Conduction Time in Lined-Up Cardiomyocyte Network in Agarose-Microfabrication Multi-Electrode Measurement Assay
Micromachines 2020, 11(12), 1105; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11121105 - 14 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 610
Abstract
We examined characteristics of the propagation of conduction in width-controlled cardiomyocyte cell networks for understanding the contribution of the geometrical arrangement of cardiomyocytes for their local fluctuation distribution. We tracked a series of extracellular field potentials of linearly lined-up human embryonic stem (ES) [...] Read more.
We examined characteristics of the propagation of conduction in width-controlled cardiomyocyte cell networks for understanding the contribution of the geometrical arrangement of cardiomyocytes for their local fluctuation distribution. We tracked a series of extracellular field potentials of linearly lined-up human embryonic stem (ES) cell-derived cardiomyocytes and mouse primary cardiomyocytes with 100 kHz sampling intervals of multi-electrodes signal acquisitions and an agarose microfabrication technology to localize the cardiomyocyte geometries in the lined-up cell networks with 100–300 μm wide agarose microstructures. Conduction time between two neighbor microelectrodes (300 μm) showed Gaussian distribution. However, the distributions maintained their form regardless of its propagation distances up to 1.5 mm, meaning propagation diffusion did not occur. In contrast, when Quinidine was applied, the propagation time distributions were increased as the faster firing regulation simulation predicted. The results indicate the “faster firing regulation” is not sufficient to explain the conservation of the propagation time distribution in cardiomyocyte networks but should be expanded with a kind of community effect of cell networks, such as the lower fluctuation regulation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Article
An Approach to Ring Resonator Biosensing Assisted by Dielectrophoresis: Design, Simulation and Fabrication
Micromachines 2020, 11(11), 954; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11110954 - 22 Oct 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 905
Abstract
The combination of extreme miniaturization with a high sensitivity and the potential to be integrated in an array form on a chip has made silicon-based photonic microring resonators a very attractive research topic. As biosensors are approaching the nanoscale, analyte mass transfer and [...] Read more.
The combination of extreme miniaturization with a high sensitivity and the potential to be integrated in an array form on a chip has made silicon-based photonic microring resonators a very attractive research topic. As biosensors are approaching the nanoscale, analyte mass transfer and bonding kinetics have been ascribed as crucial factors that limit their performance. One solution may be a system that applies dielectrophoretic forces, in addition to microfluidics, to overcome the diffusion limits of conventional biosensors. Dielectrophoresis, which involves the migration of polarized dielectric particles in a non-uniform alternating electric field, has previously been successfully applied to achieve a 1000-fold improved detection efficiency in nanopore sensing and may significantly increase the sensitivity in microring resonator biosensing. In the current work, we designed microring resonators with integrated electrodes next to the sensor surface that may be used to explore the effect of dielectrophoresis. The chip design, including two different electrode configurations, electric field gradient simulations, and the fabrication process flow of a dielectrohoresis-enhanced microring resonator-based sensor, is presented in this paper. Finite element method (FEM) simulations calculated for both electrode configurations revealed ∇E2 values above 1017 V2m−3 around the sensing areas. This is comparable to electric field gradients previously reported for successful interactions with larger molecules, such as proteins and antibodies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Article
Enhancement of the Start-Up Time for Microliter-Scale Microbial Fuel Cells (µMFCs) via the Surface Modification of Gold Electrodes
Micromachines 2020, 11(7), 703; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11070703 - 21 Jul 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 804
Abstract
Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) are biological fuel cells based on the oxidation of fuels by electrogenic bacteria to generate an electric current in electrochemical cells. There are several methods that can be employed to improve their performance. In this study, the effects of [...] Read more.
Microbial Fuel Cells (MFCs) are biological fuel cells based on the oxidation of fuels by electrogenic bacteria to generate an electric current in electrochemical cells. There are several methods that can be employed to improve their performance. In this study, the effects of gold surface modification with different thiol molecules were investigated for their implementation as anode electrodes in micro-scale MFCs (µMFCs). Several double-chamber µMFCs with 10.4 µL anode and cathode chambers were fabricated using silicon-microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) fabrication technology. µMFC systems assembled with modified gold anodes were operated under anaerobic conditions with the continuous feeding of anolyte and catholyte to compare the effect of different thiol molecules on the biofilm formation of Shewanella oneidensis MR-1. Performances were evaluated using polarization curves, Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS), and Scanning Electron Microcopy (SEM). The results showed that µMFCs modified with thiol self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) (cysteamine and 11-MUA) resulted in more than a 50% reduction in start-up times due to better bacterial attachment on the anode surface. Both 11-MUA and cysteamine modifications resulted in dense biofilms, as observed in SEM images. The power output was found to be similar in cysteamine-modified and bare gold µMFCs. The power and current densities obtained in this study were comparable to those reported in similar studies in the literature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Article
Design and Electrochemical Characterization of Spiral Electrochemical Notification Coupled Electrode (SENCE) Platform for Biosensing Application
Micromachines 2020, 11(3), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11030333 - 24 Mar 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1135
Abstract
C-reactive protein (CRP) is considered to be an important biomarker associated with many diseases. During any physiological inflammation, the level of CRP reaches its peak at 48 h, whereas its half-life is around 19 h. Hence, the detection of low-level CRP is an [...] Read more.
C-reactive protein (CRP) is considered to be an important biomarker associated with many diseases. During any physiological inflammation, the level of CRP reaches its peak at 48 h, whereas its half-life is around 19 h. Hence, the detection of low-level CRP is an important task for the prognostic management of diseases like cancer, stress, metabolic disorders, cardiovascular diseases, and so on. There are various techniques available in the market to detect low-level CRP like ELISA, Western blot, etc. An electrochemical biosensor is one of the important miniaturized platforms which provides sensitivity along with ease of operation. The most important element of an electrochemical biosensor platform is the electrode which, upon functionalization with a probe, captures the selective antibody–antigen interaction and produces a digital signal in the form of potential/current. Optimization of the electrode design can increase the sensitivity of the sensor by 5–10-fold. Herein, we come up with a new sensor design called the spiral electrochemical notification coupled electrode (SENCE) where the working electrode (WE) is concentric in nature, which shows better response than the market-available standard screen-printed electrode. The sensor is thoroughly characterized using a standard Ferro/Ferri couple. The sensing performance of the fabricated platform is also characterized by the detection of standard H2O2 using a diffusion-driven technique, and a low detection limit of 15 µM was achieved. Furthermore, we utilized the platform to detect a low level (100 ng/mL) of CRP in synthetic sweat. The manuscript provides emphasis on the design of a sensor that can offer good sensitivity in electrochemical biosensing applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Article
Fabrication of a Bare Optical Fiber-Based Biosensor
Micromachines 2019, 10(8), 522; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi10080522 - 08 Aug 2019
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 869
Abstract
A bare optical fiber-based biosensor is proposed for measuring the refractive index of different liquids and the binding kinetics of biomolecules to the sensor surface. This optical fiber sensor is based on the Kretschmann’s configuration to attain total internal reflection (TIR) for surface [...] Read more.
A bare optical fiber-based biosensor is proposed for measuring the refractive index of different liquids and the binding kinetics of biomolecules to the sensor surface. This optical fiber sensor is based on the Kretschmann’s configuration to attain total internal reflection (TIR) for surface plasmon resonance (SPR) excitation. One end of the bare optical fiber is coated with a gold film. By guiding the light source from the other end into the optical fiber, the light is reflected from the gold-deposited end and the surface evanescent wave is excited in the gold film-transparent material interface. Methanol and ethanol solutions with different refractive indices are used for measuring the corresponding changes in the peak values of the spectra and calculating the corresponding sensitivities. These values are experimentally determined to be in the order of 10−4~10−5 refractive index unit (RIU). Binding of proteins onto the sensor surface is also monitored in real time to obtain the binding kinetics. We believe that, in the future, this optical fiber sensor can serve as a useful biosensor for in situ measurement of allergens, antibody–antigen interactions, and even circulating tumor cells in the blood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Review

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Review
A Prominent Cell Manipulation Technique in BioMEMS: Dielectrophoresis
Micromachines 2020, 11(11), 990; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11110990 - 03 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 942
Abstract
BioMEMS, the biological and biomedical applications of micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS), has attracted considerable attention in recent years and has found widespread applications in disease detection, advanced diagnosis, therapy, drug delivery, implantable devices, and tissue engineering. One of the most essential and leading goals [...] Read more.
BioMEMS, the biological and biomedical applications of micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS), has attracted considerable attention in recent years and has found widespread applications in disease detection, advanced diagnosis, therapy, drug delivery, implantable devices, and tissue engineering. One of the most essential and leading goals of the BioMEMS and biosensor technologies is to develop point-of-care (POC) testing systems to perform rapid prognostic or diagnostic tests at a patient site with high accuracy. Manipulation of particles in the analyte of interest is a vital task for POC and biosensor platforms. Dielectrophoresis (DEP), the induced movement of particles in a non-uniform electrical field due to polarization effects, is an accurate, fast, low-cost, and marker-free manipulation technique. It has been indicated as a promising method to characterize, isolate, transport, and trap various particles. The aim of this review is to provide fundamental theory and principles of DEP technique, to explain its importance for the BioMEMS and biosensor fields with detailed references to readers, and to identify and exemplify the application areas in biosensors and POC devices. Finally, the challenges faced in DEP-based systems and the future prospects are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Review
Graphene Quantum Dots as Flourishing Nanomaterials for Bio-Imaging, Therapy Development, and Micro-Supercapacitors
Micromachines 2020, 11(9), 866; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11090866 - 18 Sep 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1571
Abstract
Graphene quantum dots (GQDs) are considerably a new member of the carbon family and shine amongst other members, thanks to their superior electrochemical, optical, and structural properties as well as biocompatibility features that enable us to engage them in various bioengineering purposes. Especially, [...] Read more.
Graphene quantum dots (GQDs) are considerably a new member of the carbon family and shine amongst other members, thanks to their superior electrochemical, optical, and structural properties as well as biocompatibility features that enable us to engage them in various bioengineering purposes. Especially, the quantum confinement and edge effects are giving GQDs their tremendous character, while their heteroatom doping attributes enable us to specifically and meritoriously tune their prospective characteristics for innumerable operations. Considering the substantial role offered by GQDs in the area of biomedicine and nanoscience, through this review paper, we primarily focus on their applications in bio-imaging, micro-supercapacitors, as well as in therapy development. The size-dependent aspects, functionalization, and particular utilization of the GQDs are discussed in detail with respect to their distinct nano-bio-technological applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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Review
DNA Microsystems for Biodiagnosis
Micromachines 2020, 11(4), 445; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11040445 - 23 Apr 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1364
Abstract
Researchers are continuously making progress towards diagnosis and treatment of numerous diseases. However, there are still major issues that are presenting many challenges for current medical diagnosis. On the other hand, DNA nanotechnology has evolved significantly over the last three decades and is [...] Read more.
Researchers are continuously making progress towards diagnosis and treatment of numerous diseases. However, there are still major issues that are presenting many challenges for current medical diagnosis. On the other hand, DNA nanotechnology has evolved significantly over the last three decades and is highly interdisciplinary. With many potential technologies derived from the field, it is natural to begin exploring and incorporating its knowledge to develop DNA microsystems for biodiagnosis in order to help address current obstacles, such as disease detection and drug resistance. Here, current challenges in disease detection are presented along with standard methods for diagnosis. Then, a brief overview of DNA nanotechnology is introduced along with its main attractive features for constructing biodiagnostic microsystems. Lastly, suggested DNA-based microsystems are discussed through proof-of-concept demonstrations with improvement strategies for standard diagnostic approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensors and MEMS-based Diagnostic Applications)
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