Advances in Molecular Biosensors

A special issue of Biosensors (ISSN 2079-6374). This special issue belongs to the section "Biosensors and Healthcare".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2023) | Viewed by 16494

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Biomolecular Recognition Engineering Lab, National Central University, Taoyuan, Taiwan
Interests: thermodynamics and dynamics of biological identification systems; biochip; biosensor; biomolecule and stem cell separation and purification engineering; controlled release of biomedical materials, drugs and genes
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, National Central University, Taoyuan 320317, Taiwan
Interests: biosensors; paper-based devices; surface modification and analysis; field-effect transistors; antifouling; biomarkers for disease diagnosis; aptamers; microRNAs; exosomes; ELISA

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Molecular biosensors are devices that work at a molecular level to detect the binding events between ligands and targets relying on their high specificity and affinity. Molecular biosensors have been featured in sensing technology to detect a wide variety of biomolecules and substances, including proteins, nucleic acids, hormones, etc., to diagnose early-stage diseases, detect pathogens, perform liquid biopsies, study intermolecular interactions, analyze foods, monitor health and the metabolism, determine pollutants and contaminants, etc. They are anticipated to continue thriving and functioning in various applications of translational medicine and biomedical domains.

This Special Issue welcomes high-quality publications, including reviews, perspectives, communications, and research articles related to recent advances in molecular biosensors, especially studies aiming to optimize molecular biosensors for biochemical and biomedical applications and to discover and invent novel functions of molecular biosensors. The potential themes cover, but are not restricted to, the following:

  • Types of biosensors: electrochemical, optical (surface plasmon resonance and fluorescence), electrical, enzymatic, and nanobiosensors;
  • Materials for transducers: gold (Au), zinc oxide (ZnO), silicon (SiO2), carbon-based materials (graphene and carbon nanotubes), and organic materials;
  • Bioligands: proteins (antibodies and their fragments and domains, enzymes, and peptides), nucleic acids (DNA, RNA, oligonucleotides, aptamers, phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer, and peptide nucleic acids), enzymes, biomimetic receptors, and polymers;
  • Targets: biomarkers (antibodies, antigens, microRNAs, viruses, bacteria, etc.), nutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals), metal ions, pathogens (airborne and foodborne), pesticides and herbicides, and microbes;
  • Applications: early-stage diagnosis of chronic diseases, detecting infectious diseases and pandemics, bioremediation, monitoring health and the metabolism, determining pollutants and contaminants, studying probe–target interactions, and biologics manufacturing (biomanufacturing);
  • Design: transducer fabrication techniques, linkers for surface modification, antifouling functions, immobilizing bio-probes, sensing mechanisms, and signal amplification;
  • Improving sensitivity and detection limit.

Prof. Dr. Wen-Yih Chen
Dr. Cao-An Vu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Biosensors is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2700 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • antibodies
  • nucleic acids
  • biomarkers
  • enzymes
  • immunoassay
  • chronic diseases
  • surface modification
  • antifouling
  • signal amplification

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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14 pages, 970 KiB  
Article
Rapid and Versatile Biosensing of Liposome Encapsulation Efficiency Using Electrical Conductivity Sensor
by Tatiane Melo Pereira, Cínthia Caetano Bonatto and Luciano Paulino Silva
Biosensors 2023, 13(9), 878; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios13090878 - 08 Sep 2023
Viewed by 1875
Abstract
Liposomes are prominent nanosystems for drug delivery, with potential extending beyond isolated drugs. Ethanol-aqueous plant extracts can be encapsulated within liposomes to protect bioactive compounds (secondary metabolites) from rapid oxidation and enable sustained release. Determining which compound classes are present in each extract [...] Read more.
Liposomes are prominent nanosystems for drug delivery, with potential extending beyond isolated drugs. Ethanol-aqueous plant extracts can be encapsulated within liposomes to protect bioactive compounds (secondary metabolites) from rapid oxidation and enable sustained release. Determining which compound classes are present in each extract and the encapsulation efficiency (EE) of these extracts in liposomes is crucial for nanocarrier functionality. This involves assessing the ratio of bioactive substances within liposomes to the total content. However, quantifying EE for non-isolated compounds poses challenges due to the need for advanced analytical equipment and biosensing approaches. This study introduces an innovative method for EE quantification, using a conductivity electrode (k = 0.842/cm) to establish an EE biosensing technology. By correlating dynamic light scattering (DLS), zeta potential (ZP), and electrical conductivity (Cnd) data with the conductivity meter’s calibration curve, a robust relationship between the free extract concentration and Cnd (r2 ≥ 0.950) was established. Lavender-loaded liposomes demonstrated an EE of 56.33%, while wormwood and oregano formulations exhibited high EEs of 94.33% and 91.70%, respectively. In contrast, sage-loaded liposomes exhibited an inadequate EE, encapsulating only approximately 0.57% of the extract. The straightforward quantification of the free extract within liposome formulations, compared to more complex approaches, could facilitate EE determination and support future characterizations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Biosensors)
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12 pages, 1979 KiB  
Article
Validation of Rapid and Economic Colorimetric Nanoparticle Assay for SARS-CoV-2 RNA Detection in Saliva and Nasopharyngeal Swabs
by María Armesto, Mathias Charconnet, José M. Marimón, Cristina Lía Fernández Regueiro, Jia Jia, Tingdong Yan, Ane Sorarrain, Marek Grzelczak, María Sanromán, Mónica Vicente, Boris Klempa, Javier Zubiria, Yuan Peng, Lei Zhang, Jianhua Zhang and Charles H. Lawrie
Biosensors 2023, 13(2), 275; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios13020275 - 15 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2544
Abstract
Even with the widespread uptake of vaccines, the SARS-CoV-2-induced COVID-19 pandemic continues to overwhelm many healthcare systems worldwide. Consequently, massive scale molecular diagnostic testing remains a key strategy to control the ongoing pandemic, and the need for instrument-free, economic and easy-to-use molecular diagnostic [...] Read more.
Even with the widespread uptake of vaccines, the SARS-CoV-2-induced COVID-19 pandemic continues to overwhelm many healthcare systems worldwide. Consequently, massive scale molecular diagnostic testing remains a key strategy to control the ongoing pandemic, and the need for instrument-free, economic and easy-to-use molecular diagnostic alternatives to PCR remains a goal of many healthcare providers, including WHO. We developed a test (Repvit) based on gold nanoparticles that can detect SARS-CoV-2 RNA directly from nasopharyngeal swab or saliva samples with a limit of detection (LOD) of 2.1 × 105 copies mL−1 by the naked eye (or 8 × 104 copies mL−1 by spectrophotometer) in less than 20 min, without the need for any instrumentation, and with a manufacturing price of <$1. We tested this technology on 1143 clinical samples from RNA extracted from nasopharyngeal swabs (n = 188), directly from saliva samples (n = 635; assayed by spectrophotometer) and nasopharyngeal swabs (n = 320) from multiple centers and obtained sensitivity values of 92.86%, 93.75% and 94.57% and specificities of 93.22%, 97.96% and 94.76%, respectively. To our knowledge, this is the first description of a colloidal nanoparticle assay that allows for rapid nucleic acid detection at clinically relevant sensitivity without the need for external instrumentation that could be used in resource-limited settings or for self-testing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Biosensors)
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17 pages, 5288 KiB  
Article
Development of a Point-of-Care SPR Sensor for the Diagnosis of Acute Myocardial Infarction
by Sunil Choudhary and Zeynep Altintas
Biosensors 2023, 13(2), 229; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios13020229 - 05 Feb 2023
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3064
Abstract
A novel point-of-care surface plasmon resonance (SPR) sensor was developed for the sensitive and real-time detection of cardiac troponin I (cTnI) using epitope-imprinted molecular receptors. The surface coverage of a nano-molecularly imprinted polymer (nanoMIP)-functionalized SPR sensor chip and the size of nanoMIPs (155.7 [...] Read more.
A novel point-of-care surface plasmon resonance (SPR) sensor was developed for the sensitive and real-time detection of cardiac troponin I (cTnI) using epitope-imprinted molecular receptors. The surface coverage of a nano-molecularly imprinted polymer (nanoMIP)-functionalized SPR sensor chip and the size of nanoMIPs (155.7 nm) were characterized using fluorescence microscopy and dynamic light scattering techniques, respectively. Atomic force microscopy, electrochemical impedance spectroscopy, square wave voltammetry and cyclic voltammetry techniques confirmed the successful implementation of each step of the sensor fabrication. The SPR bio-detection assay was initially established by targeting the cTnI peptide template, and the sensor allowed the detection of the peptide in the concentration range of 100–1000 nM with a correlation coefficient (R2) of 0.96 and limit of detection (LOD) of 76.47 nM. The optimum assay conditions for protein recognition were subsequently determined, and the cTnI biomarker could be detected in a wide concentration range (0.78–50 ng mL−1) with high reproducibility (R2 = 0.91) and sensitivity (LOD: 0.52 ng mL−1). The overall sensor results were subjected to three binding isotherm models, where nanoMIP-cTnI interaction followed the Langmuir binding isotherm with the dissociation constant of 2.99 × 10−11 M, indicating a very strong affinity between the cTnI biomarker and epitope-imprinted synthetic receptor. Furthermore, the selectivity of the sensor was confirmed through studying with a control nanoMIP that was prepared by imprinting a non-specific peptide template. Based on the cross-reactivity tests with non-specific molecules (i.e., glucose, p53 protein, transferrin and bovine serum albumin), the nanoMIP-SPR sensor is highly specific for the target biomarker. The developed biomimetic sensor, relying on the direct assay strategy, holds great potential not only for the early and point-of-care testing of acute myocardial infarction but also for other life-threatening diseases that can be diagnosed by determining the elevated levels of certain biomarkers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Biosensors)
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21 pages, 4772 KiB  
Article
An Ultrasensitive miRNA-Based Genosensor for Detection of MicroRNA 21 in Gastric Cancer Cells Based on Functional Signal Amplifier and Synthesized Perovskite-Graphene Oxide and AuNPs
by Payam Shahbazi-Derakhshi, Elham Mahmoudi, Mir Mostafa Majidi, Hessamaddin Sohrabi, Mohammad Amini, Mir Reza Majidi, Aligholi Niaei, Nima Shaykh-Baygloo and Ahad Mokhtarzadeh
Biosensors 2023, 13(2), 172; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios13020172 - 22 Jan 2023
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2565
Abstract
In the present research work, the state-of-art label-free electrochemical genosensing platform was developed based on the hybridization process in the presence of [Fe(CN)6]3−/4− as an efficient redox probe for sensitive recognition of the miRNA-21 in human gastric cell lines samples. [...] Read more.
In the present research work, the state-of-art label-free electrochemical genosensing platform was developed based on the hybridization process in the presence of [Fe(CN)6]3−/4− as an efficient redox probe for sensitive recognition of the miRNA-21 in human gastric cell lines samples. To attain this aim, perovskite nanosheets were initially synthesized. Afterward, the obtained compound was combined with the graphene oxide resulting in an effective electrochemical modifier, which was dropped on the surface of the Au electrode. Then, AuNPs (Gold Nano Particles) have been electrochemically-immobilized on perovskite-graphene oxide/Au-modified electrode surface through the chronoamperometry (CA) technique. Finally, a self-assembling monolayer reaction of ss-capture RNA ensued by the thiol group at the end of the probe with AuNPs on the modified electrode surface. miRNA-21 has been cast on the Au electrode surface to apply the hybridization process. To find out the effectiveness of the synthesized modifier agent, the electrochemical behavior of the modified electrode has been analyzed through DPV (differential pulse voltammetry) and CV (cyclic voltammetry) techniques. The prepared biomarker-detection bioassay offers high sensitivity and specificity, good performance, and appropriate precision and accuracy for the highly-sensitive determination of miRNA-21. Different characterization methods have been used, such as XRD, Raman, EDS, and FE-SEM, for morphological characterization and investigation of particle size. Based on optimal conditions, the limit of detection and quantification have been acquired at 2.94 fM and 8.75 fM, respectively. Furthermore, it was possible to achieve a wide linear range which is between 10−14 and 10−7 for miRNA-21. Moreover, the selectivity of the proposed biosensing assay was investigated through its potential in the detection of one, two, and three-base mismatched sequences. Moreover, it was possible to investigate the repeatability and reproducibility of the related bio-assay. To evaluate the hybridization process, it is important that the planned biomarker detection bio-assay could be directly re-used and re-generated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Biosensors)
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Review

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23 pages, 5284 KiB  
Review
Strategies for Surface Design in Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) Sensing
by Cristina-Virginia Topor, Mihaela Puiu and Camelia Bala
Biosensors 2023, 13(4), 465; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios13040465 - 07 Apr 2023
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 5706
Abstract
Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) comprises several surface-sensitive techniques that enable the trace and ultra-trace detection of various analytes through affinity pairing. Although enabling label-free, sensitive detection and real-time monitoring, several issues remain to be addressed, such as poor stability, non-specific adsorption and the [...] Read more.
Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) comprises several surface-sensitive techniques that enable the trace and ultra-trace detection of various analytes through affinity pairing. Although enabling label-free, sensitive detection and real-time monitoring, several issues remain to be addressed, such as poor stability, non-specific adsorption and the loss of operational activity of biomolecules. In this review, the progress over sensor modification, immobilization techniques and novel 2D nanomaterials, gold nanostructures and magnetic nanoparticles for signal amplification is discussed. The advantages and disadvantages of each design strategy will be provided together with some of the recent achievements. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Molecular Biosensors)
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