Enzyme assays using sensor arrays based on ion-selective carbon nanotube field-effect transistors
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SubjectUrea; Ion-selective CNT-FET; Enzyme-substrate interactions; Electrolyte-gated CNT-FET; Array
In the fields of clinical diagnostics and point-of-care diagnosis as well as food and environmental monitoring there is a high demand for reliable high-throughput, rapid and highly sensitive assays for a simultaneous detection of several analytes in complex and low-volume samples. Sensor platforms based on solution-processable electrolyte-gated carbon nanotube field-effect transistors (CNT-FETs) are a simple and cost-effective alternative for conventional assays. In this work we demonstrate a selective as well as direct detection of the products of an enzyme-substrate interaction, here the for metabolic processes important urea-urease system, with sensors based on spray-coated CNT-FETs. The selective and direct detection is achieved by immobilizing the enzyme urease via certain surface functionalization techniques on the sensor surface and further modifying the active interfaces with polymeric ion-selective membranes as well as pH-sensitive layers. Thereby, we can avoid the generally applied approach for a field-effect based detection of enzyme reactions via detecting changes in the pH value due to an on-going enzymatic reaction and directly detect selectively the products of the enzymatic conversion. Thus, we can realize a buffering-capacity independent monitoring of changes in the substrate concentration.