Laser Writing Breathes Life Into High-Performance Sensing Platforms

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LDG/MIP-Based Electrochemical Sensor

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The LDG/MIP-based electrochemical sensing unit sensitively and selectively identifies BPA in water samples. Credit: © 2020 KAUST

An easy technique established at KAUST utilizes laser beams to produce graphene electrodes that have much better efficiency than those produced through older techniques.

Electrodes including graphene, an irregular kind of carbon, might change the method electroactive compounds are identified and determined in many fields varying from food security and scientific medical diagnosis to ecological tracking1,2,3

Graphene makes up numerous ultrathin and extremely bought sheets of interconnected honeycomb-shaped rings of carbon atoms. This multilayered architecture supplies the product with extraordinary electronic homes, particularly electrical conductivity and electrocatalytic activity, along with physical functions that work for making electrochemical sensing units.

Graphene Electrodes Fabricated

Graphene electrodes can be produced on different substrates utilizing a CO2 laser beam. Credit: © 2020 Elsevier B.V. Ref. 1, Fig 1A

Typically, graphene electrodes are produced by peeling specific sheets from graphite or transferring a reactive gaseous mix of precursors onto a substrate. However, these techniques include lengthy, multistep synthesis and seclusion procedures; plus, they have a hard time to manage stacking and oxidation of the sheets.

To enhance on technically difficult and costly techniques, scientists from Khaled Salama’s laboratory, in cooperation with others, established an easy and scalable technique that transforms polymer or carbon precursor movies into graphene electrodes utilizing a laser beam. This mask-free technique produces uniform, three-dimensional multilayered electrodes that integrate high porosity and area, needed for next-generation electrochemical sensing unit and biosensor platforms.

Salama’s group and partners from the Hassan II University of Casablanca, Morocco, bundled laser-derived graphene (LDG) electrodes in noticing platforms for significant sources of anti-oxidants called phenolic substances and associated electroactive biomolecules².

All checked substances revealed greater electrocatalytic activity on the graphene-based platforms than on traditional systems utilizing carbon electrodes.

“The graphene-based platforms showed excellent performance for detecting paracetamol, a common drug,” states Abdellatif Ait Lahcen, a postdoc from Salama’s Lab. They likewise differentiated paracetamol in a commercially readily available tablet that integrates the drug with the antioxidant ascorbic acid, which frequently produces disturbances in common electrochemical analyses.

An examination of the electrochemical habits of a set of hormonal agents and neurotransmitters called catecholamines likewise supplied insight into the systems of oxidation–decrease responses of these substances.

There are lots of electrode adjustment techniques that can improve sensing unit efficiency. Biological receptors, such as enzymes, nucleic acids and antibodies, supply target-specific sensing units, however they need intricate surface area immobilization methods.

Potential options are emerging for these natural receptors. Synthetic polymers referred to as molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) are resilient and simple to prepare. KAUST scientists prepare to enhance the fabrication of the sensing units and broaden their applications to other biomolecules and illness biomarkers. “We are developing MIP-modified biomimetic sensors for the early detection of breast cancer biomarkers,” Ait Lahcen states.

Sensing Platforms Using Laser-Derived Graphene Electrodes

Sensing platforms utilizing laser-derived graphene electrodes (LSGEs) display greater electrochemical efficiencies than traditional systems utilizing carbon electrodes (SPCE) for the detection of sulfur-containing substances, drugs, anti-oxidants, vitamins, catecholamines and their precursor, L-Dopa. Credit: © 2020 KAUST

The scientists customized LDG electrodes with MIPs to produce an inexpensive sensing unit for the detection of bisphenol A (BPA) in water and plastic samples³. The adjustment included manufacturing polypyrrole under used voltage in the existence of BPA particles, which served as design templates and left imprints in the polymer when gotten rid of. The sensing unit showed greater level of sensitivity and selectivity towards BPA than comparable compounds, such as estradiol, epinephrine and bisphenol F.

“Combining LDG electrodes with MIPs will lead to new highly sensitive and selective electrochemical sensors,” states Tutku Beduk, a Ph.D. trainee from Salama’s laboratory.

Salama thinks that these MIP-based sensing units will assist guarantee that water stays tidy, pure and toxin-free.

References:

“Electrochemical sensors and biosensors using laser-derived graphene: A comprehensive review” by Abdellatif Ait Lahcen, Sakandar Rauf, Tutku Beduk, Ceren Durmus, Abdulrahman Aljedaibi, Suna Timur, Husam N. Alshareef, Aziz Amine, Otto S. Wolfbeis and Khaled N. Salama, 27 August 2020, Biosensors and Bioelectronics.
DOI: 10.1016/j.bios.2020.112565

“Laser scribed graphene: A novel platform for highly sensitive detection of electroactive biomolecules” by Abdelghani Ghanam, Abdellatif Ait Lahcen, Tutku Beduk, Husam N. Alshareef, Aziz Amine and Khaled Nabil Salama, 19 August 2020, Biosensors and Bioelectronics.
DOI: 10.1016/j.bios.2020.112509

“One-step electrosynthesized molecularly imprinted polymer on laser scribed graphene bisphenol a sensor” by Tutku Beduk, Abdellatif Ait Lahcen, Nouran Tashkandi and Khaled Nabil Salama, 11 April 2020, Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical.
DOI: 10.1016/j.snb.2020.128026