Recent advances in ZnO nanostructures and thin films for biosensor applications: review

Anal Chim Acta. 2012 Aug 6;737:1-21. doi: 10.1016/j.aca.2012.05.048. Epub 2012 Jun 4.


Biosensors have shown great potential for health care and environmental monitoring. The performance of biosensors depends on their components, among which the matrix material, i.e., the layer between the recognition layer of biomolecule and transducer, plays a crucial role in defining the stability, sensitivity and shelf-life of a biosensor. Recently, zinc oxide (ZnO) nanostructures and thin films have attracted much interest as materials for biosensors due to their biocompatibility, chemical stability, high isoelectric point, electrochemical activity, high electron mobility, ease of synthesis by diverse methods and high surface-to-volume ratio. ZnO nanostructures have shown the binding of biomolecules in desired orientations with improved conformation and high biological activity, resulting in enhanced sensing characteristics. Furthermore, compatibility with complementary metal oxide semiconductor technology for constructing integrated circuits makes ZnO nanostructures suitable candidate for future small integrated biosensor devices. This review highlights recent advances in various approaches towards synthesis of ZnO nanostructures and thin films and their applications in biosensor technology.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biosensing Techniques / instrumentation*
  • Biosensing Techniques / methods
  • Cholesterol / analysis
  • DNA / analysis
  • Electrochemical Techniques / instrumentation
  • Glucose / analysis
  • Humans
  • Hydrogen Peroxide / analysis
  • Immunoglobulins / analysis
  • Nanostructures / chemistry*
  • Nanostructures / ultrastructure
  • Nanotechnology / instrumentation*
  • Nanotechnology / methods
  • Rabbits
  • Zinc Oxide / chemistry*


  • Immunoglobulins
  • DNA
  • Cholesterol
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Glucose
  • Zinc Oxide