Gold Graphene Nano Composite Sensors for Biomolecule Detection - NaCoS

The decentralization of the health care system driven by the demographic change creates a strong demand for biosensors that enable molecular diagnostics outside of laboratories at the point-of-care. Among the various molecular detection methods, electrochemical biosensors are most appealing because of their potential for cost-effective and flexible production. In particular, the progress in printing technologies is opening new possibilities for the fabrication of electronic components in combination with functional materials, which are key components in biosensors. At present, single parameter glucose tests for diabetes monitoring still represent the most prominent domain for printed biosensors. However, a wide range of other applications at the point-of-care is currently emerging such as the early diagnosis of cardiovascular diseases, which in 2010 have been the cause of death for 38% of the Chinese and 44% of the Austrian population. These applications typically require the detection of several different biomarkers. Key requirements for a successful commercialization of electrochemical biosensors therefore are that they can be fabricated entirely by printing processes and that they are capable of measuring multiple molecular biomarkers simultaneously with suitable sensitivity and selectivity.

The core innovation of the NaCoS project is a novel approach for the modular fabrication of multi-parameter biosensors with application specific biofunctionalisation taking full advantage of printing technologies. This modular approach will facilitate the flexible production of biosensors using off-the-shelf electrode arrays without the need for a multistep biofunctionalisation of the electrodes. More precisely, in the NaCoS project we will realize electrochemical nanosensors for the quantification of three biomarkers (CRP, BNP and thrombin) relevant for the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular diseases as application example.

For the fabrication of the electrodes screen printing will be explored, as it is compatible with roll-to-roll processing for mass production at a later stage. Printing the working electrodes, the reference electrodes, the insulation layers and the liquid confinement borders will be investigated to enable the integration with subsequent biofunctionalization by inkjet printing of nanocomposites.

Aiming at the realisation of an electrochemical multi parameter biosensor concept which meets the requirements for successful commercialization, this cross border research project brings together complementary expertise in the areas of printed electrodes (SCI), nanocomposite materials (SHU), biofunctionalisation and bioinkjet printing (AIT). The cooperation between SHU and the Austrian partners will strengthen the scientific cooperation between China and Austria.


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