Rapid Point-of-Care COVID-19 Diagnosis with a Gold-Nanoarchitecture-Assisted Laser-Scribed Graphene Biosensor

Anal Chem. 2021 Jun 22;93(24):8585-8594. doi: 10.1021/acs.analchem.1c01444. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Abstract

The global pandemic caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus has revealed the urgent need for accurate, rapid, and affordable diagnostic tests for epidemic understanding and management by monitoring the population worldwide. Though current diagnostic methods including real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) provide sensitive detection of SARS-CoV-2, they require relatively long processing time, equipped laboratory facilities, and highly skilled personnel. Laser-scribed graphene (LSG)-based biosensing platforms have gained enormous attention as miniaturized electrochemical systems, holding an enormous potential as point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tools. We describe here a miniaturized LSG-based electrochemical sensing scheme for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) diagnosis combined with three-dimensional (3D) gold nanostructures. This electrode was modified with the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein antibody following the proper surface modifications proved by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) characterizations as well as electrochemical techniques. The system was integrated into a handheld POC detection system operated using a custom smartphone application, providing a user-friendly diagnostic platform due to its ease of operation, accessibility, and systematic data management. The analytical features of the electrochemical immunoassay were evaluated using the standard solution of S-protein in the range of 5.0-500 ng/mL with a detection limit of 2.9 ng/mL. A clinical study was carried out on 23 patient blood serum samples with successful COVID-19 diagnosis, compared to the commercial RT-PCR, antibody blood test, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) IgG and IgA test results. Our test provides faster results compared to commercial diagnostic tools and offers a promising alternative solution for next-generation POC applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Biosensing Techniques*
  • COVID-19 Testing
  • COVID-19* / diagnosis
  • Gold
  • Graphite*
  • Humans
  • Lasers
  • Nanostructures
  • Point-of-Care Systems*
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus

Substances

  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
  • spike protein, SARS-CoV-2
  • Gold
  • Graphite