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Review
. 2017 Jul 19;17(7):1645.
doi: 10.3390/s17071645.

Zinc Oxide-Based Self-Powered Potentiometric Chemical Sensors for Biomolecules and Metal Ions

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Free PMC article
Review

Zinc Oxide-Based Self-Powered Potentiometric Chemical Sensors for Biomolecules and Metal Ions

Muhammad Israr-Qadir et al. Sensors (Basel). .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Advances in the miniaturization and portability of the chemical sensing devices have always been hindered by the external power supply problem, which has focused new interest in the fabrication of self-powered sensing devices for disease diagnosis and the monitoring of analytes. This review describes the fabrication of ZnO nanomaterial-based sensors synthesized on different conducting substrates for extracellular detection, and the use of a sharp borosilicate glass capillary (diameter, d = 700 nm) to grow ZnO nanostructures for intracellular detection purposes in individual human and frog cells. The electrocatalytic activity and fast electron transfer properties of the ZnO materials provide the necessary energy to operate as well as a quick sensing device output response, where the role of the nanomorphology utilized for the fabrication of the sensor is crucial for the production of the operational energy. Simplicity, design, cost, sensitivity, selectivity and a quick and stable response are the most important features of a reliable sensor for routine applications. The review details the extra- and intra-cellular applications of the biosensors for the detection and monitoring of different metallic ions present in biological matrices, along with the biomolecules glucose and cholesterol.

Keywords: cholesterol; glucose; metallic ions; potentiometric chemical sensors; self-powered sensor; zinc oxide nanostructures.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Schematic images of (a) a two electrode setup for potentiometric measurements showing its self-powered sensing ability without any external battery/power source, (b) a three electrode setup for amperometric/voltammetric measurements with an external power source.
Figure 2
Figure 2
(a) SEM image of ZnO nanowires chemically grown on a silver wire. (b,c) Experimental setup and reaction mechanism of the cholesterol detection process [23].
Figure 3
Figure 3
(a) SEM image of three-dimensional ZnO dahlia-flowers. (b) Repeated calibration curves for the cholesterol biosensor against a standard Ag/AgCl reference electrode [24].
Figure 4
Figure 4
(a) Output response for the cholesterol biosensor against the reaction time. (b) Storage capability of the biosensor repeatedly tested for 10 consecutive days [25].
Figure 5
Figure 5
The electrochemical response of microscale biosensor against the logarithmic range of glucose electrolyte [38].
Figure 6
Figure 6
(a) Mechanism of the insulin-induced activation of the glucose uptake. (b) Impact of insulin induction in the extracellular solution on the output response curve during intracellular glucose sensing measurements [38].
Figure 7
Figure 7
Calibration curve for zinc ion detection using ionophore-coated ZnO nanorods [48].
Figure 8
Figure 8
(a,b) Impact of different pH and temperature values on the response curves of zinc ion sensor [48].
Figure 9
Figure 9
Schematic image of the two electrodes measurement setup. Microscopic images of human cells (adipocytes) and a single frog cell (oocyte) [52].
Figure 10
Figure 10
(Top) Calibration response curve of the Mg2+ sensor vs. reference electrode. The inset shows images of frog and human cells. (Bottom) The output response curves without (red) and with (black and green) interfering ions in the analyte solution [52].
Figure 11
Figure 11
(a) Schematic image of a micro-electrode partially and completely inserted in a cell. (b) The electrochemical response of the partially inserted micro-electrode with varied concentration of buffer solution in the surroundings. Inset shows the response curve of a biosensor completely inserted in the cell [42].

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