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Special Issue "The Applications of Sensors and Biosensors in Investigating Drugs, Nutraceuticals and Foods"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Biosensors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 January 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Luigi Campanella

Department of Chemistry, University of Rome “Sapienza”, P.le A. Moro 5, Rome 00185, Italy
Website 1 | Website 2 | E-Mail
Interests: urban pollution; oxidative stress; cultural heritage; field effect transistor; integral toxicity
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Mauro Tomassetti

Department of Chemistry, University of Rome “Sapienza”, P.le A. Moro 5, Rome 00185, Italy
Website | E-Mail
Interests: sensors; biosensors; immunosensors; foods; drugs; nutraceuticals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Our life is continuously under siege by aggressive media related to environmental pollution. Foods play a dual role in this:

  1. They suffer this situation and become a further source of danger and risk: This occurs when they lack safety conditions because of the transfer of pollutants from the environment to them; in fact, this loss can also be ascribed to artificially-added compounds present to increase the commercial value of food itself
  2. They have become a defense instrument for humans, as most foods are functional to restoring the activity needed after the above mentioned damages; this aspect is the main reason for the birth of nutraceuticals: Foods acting as drugs—but without their secondary effects—due to their composition.
  3. The rapid analysis of drugs, pharmaceutical formulations and nutraceuticals are increasingly required, both for a certain amount of deregulation of the production of drugs on the market and for the increasing contribution of drugs to the problem of environmental pollution.

Corresponding to this double role, foods need to be controlled for their composition, quality, and safety. Analytical chemistry has proposed official methods for the analysis of this matrix, but, in some cases, these methods are time consuming, not so easy to be managed in a lab, and are sometime costly. Sensor science, born especially for environmental reasons, has found further applications in many other fields, one of which is represented by foods. This Special Issue is dedicated to sensors for the assessment of the composition, quality, and safety of foods, drugs and nutraceuticals.

Prof. Dr. Luigi Campanella
Prof. Dr. Mauro Tomassetti
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Direct Methanol (or Ethanol) Fuel Cell as Enzymatic or Non-Enzymatic Device, Used to Check Ethanol in Several Pharmaceutical and Forensic Samples
Sensors 2018, 18(11), 3596; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18113596
Received: 28 June 2018 / Revised: 18 September 2018 / Accepted: 17 October 2018 / Published: 23 October 2018
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Abstract
It was already demonstrated by our research group that a direct catalytic methanol (or ethanol) fuel cell (DMFC) device can be used also for analytical purposes, such as the determination of ethanol content in beverages. In the present research we extended the application
[...] Read more.
It was already demonstrated by our research group that a direct catalytic methanol (or ethanol) fuel cell (DMFC) device can be used also for analytical purposes, such as the determination of ethanol content in beverages. In the present research we extended the application to the analysis of several ethanol-based pharmaceutical products, i.e., pharmaceutical tinctures (dyes) and disinfectants. In recent work we have also shown that the use of alcohol dehydrogenase enzyme as a component of the anodic section of a direct catalytic methanol (or ethanol) fuel cell significantly improves the performance of a simple DMFC device, making it more suitable to measure ethanol (or methanol) in real samples by this cell. At the same time, we have also shown that DMFC can respond to certain organic compounds that are more complex than methanol and ethanol and having R(R’)CH-OH group in the molecule. Firstly, pharmaceutical dyes were analyzed for their ethanol content using the simple catalytic DMFC device, with good accuracy and precision. The results are illustrated in the present paper. Additionally, a detailed investigation carried out on commercial denatured alcoholic samples evidenced several interferences due to the contained additives. Secondly, we hypothesized that by using the enzymatic fuel cell it would be possible to improve the determination, for instance, of certain antibiotics, such as imipenem, or else carry out determinations of ethanol content in saliva and serum (simulating forensic tests, correlated to drivers “breath test”); even if this has already been hypothesized in previous papers, the present study is the first to perform them experimentally, obtaining satisfactory results. In practice, all of the goals which we proposed were reached, confirming the remarkable opportunities of the enzymatic (or non-enzymatic) DMFC device. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Fabrication of a Food Nano-Platform Sensor for Determination of Vanillin in Food Samples
Sensors 2018, 18(9), 2817; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18092817
Received: 26 July 2018 / Revised: 11 August 2018 / Accepted: 23 August 2018 / Published: 27 August 2018
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Abstract
Herein, we describe the fabrication of NiO decorated single wall carbon nanotubes (NiO-SWCNTs) nanocomposites using the precipitation method. The synthesized NiO-SWCNTs nanocomposites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Remarkably, NiO-SWCNTs and 1-butylpyridinium hexafluorophosphate modified carbon paste electrode (CPE/NiO-SWCNTs/BPrPF6)
[...] Read more.
Herein, we describe the fabrication of NiO decorated single wall carbon nanotubes (NiO-SWCNTs) nanocomposites using the precipitation method. The synthesized NiO-SWCNTs nanocomposites were characterized by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and Transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Remarkably, NiO-SWCNTs and 1-butylpyridinium hexafluorophosphate modified carbon paste electrode (CPE/NiO-SWCNTs/BPrPF6) were employed for the electrochemical detection of vanillin. The vanillin sensor showed an ultra-high sensitivity of 0.3594 μA/μM and a low detection limit of 0.007 μM. In the final step, the NiO-SWCNTs/BPrPF6 was used as the suitable tool for food analysis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Broad-Spectrum Sweet Taste Sensor Based on Ni(OH)2/Ni Electrode
Sensors 2018, 18(9), 2758; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18092758
Received: 9 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 15 August 2018 / Published: 22 August 2018
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Abstract
A broad-spectrum sweet taste sensor based on Ni(OH)2/Ni electrode was fabricated by the cyclic voltammetry technique. This sensor can be directly used to detect natural sweet substances in 0.1 M NaOH solution by chronoamperometry method. The current value measured by the
[...] Read more.
A broad-spectrum sweet taste sensor based on Ni(OH)2/Ni electrode was fabricated by the cyclic voltammetry technique. This sensor can be directly used to detect natural sweet substances in 0.1 M NaOH solution by chronoamperometry method. The current value measured by the sensor shows a linear relationship with the concentration of glucose, sucrose, fructose, maltose, lactose, xylitol, sorbitol, and erythritol (R2 = 0.998, 0.983, 0.999, 0.989, 0.985, 0.990, 0.991, and 0.985, respectively). Moreover, the characteristic value of this sensor is well correlated with the concentration and relative sweetness of eight sweet substances. The good correlation between the characteristic value of six fruit samples measured by the sensor and human sensory sweetness measured by sensory evaluation (correlation coefficient = 0.95) indicates that it can reflect the sweetness of fruits containing several sweet substances. In addition, the sensor also exhibits good long-term stability over 40 days (signal ratio fluctuation ranges from 91.5% to 116.2%). Thus, this broad-spectrum sensor is promising for sweet taste sensory application. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Preliminary Study on Biosensor-Type Time-Temperature Integrator for Intelligent Food Packaging
Sensors 2018, 18(6), 1949; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18061949
Received: 19 May 2018 / Revised: 5 June 2018 / Accepted: 12 June 2018 / Published: 15 June 2018
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Abstract
A glucose biosensor was utilized as a platform for the time-temperature integrator (TTI), a device for intelligent food packaging. The TTI system is composed of glucose oxidase, glucose, a pH indicator, and a three-electrode potentiostat, which produces an electrical signal as well as
[...] Read more.
A glucose biosensor was utilized as a platform for the time-temperature integrator (TTI), a device for intelligent food packaging. The TTI system is composed of glucose oxidase, glucose, a pH indicator, and a three-electrode potentiostat, which produces an electrical signal as well as color development. The reaction kinetics of these response variables were analyzed under isothermal conditions. The reaction rates of the electrical current and color changes were 0.0360 ± 0.0020 (95% confidence limit), 0.0566 ± 0.0026, 0.0716 ± 0.0024, 0.1073 ± 0.0028 µA/min, and 0.0187 ± 0.0005, 0.0293 ± 0.0018, 0.0363 ± 0.0012, 0.0540 ± 0.0019 1/min, at 5, 15, 25, and 35 °C, respectively. The Arrhenius activation energy of the current reaction (Eacurrent) was 25.0 ± 1.6 kJ/mol and the Eacolor of the color reactions was 24.2 ± 0.6 kJ/mol. The similarity of these Ea shows agreement in the prediction of food qualities between the electrical signal and color development. Consequently, the function of the new time-temperature integrator system could be extended to that of a biosensor compatible with any electrical utilization equipment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Ultrasensitive Electrochemical Detection of Clostridium perfringens DNA Based Morphology-Dependent DNA Adsorption Properties of CeO2 Nanorods in Dairy Products
Sensors 2018, 18(6), 1878; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18061878
Received: 21 May 2018 / Revised: 4 June 2018 / Accepted: 6 June 2018 / Published: 8 June 2018
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Abstract
Foodborne pathogens such as Clostridium perfringens can cause diverse illnesses and seriously threaten to human health, yet far less attention has been given to detecting these pathogenic bacteria. Herein, two morphologies of nanoceria were synthesized via adjusting the concentration of NaOH, and CeO
[...] Read more.
Foodborne pathogens such as Clostridium perfringens can cause diverse illnesses and seriously threaten to human health, yet far less attention has been given to detecting these pathogenic bacteria. Herein, two morphologies of nanoceria were synthesized via adjusting the concentration of NaOH, and CeO2 nanorod has been utilized as sensing material to achieve sensitive and selective detection of C. perfringens DNA sequence due to its strong adsorption ability towards DNA compared to nanoparticle. The DNA probe was tightly immobilized on CeO2/chitosan modified electrode surface via metal coordination, and the DNA surface density was 2.51 × 10−10 mol/cm2. Under optimal experimental conditions, the electrochemical impedance biosensor displays favorable selectivity toward target DNA in comparison with base-mismatched and non-complementary DNA. The dynamic linear range of the proposed biosensor for detecting oligonucleotide sequence of Clostridium perfringens was from 1.0 × 10−14 to 1.0 × 10−7 mol/L. The detection limit was 7.06 × 10−15 mol/L. In comparison, differential pulse voltammetry (DPV) method quantified the target DNA with a detection limit of 1.95 × 10−15 mol/L. Moreover, the DNA biosensor could detect C. perfringens extracted DNA in dairy products and provided a potential application in food quality control. Full article
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