A new alcohol oxidase (AOX) enzyme-based formaldehyde biosensor based on acrylic microspheres has been developed. Hydrophobic poly(n-butyl acrylate-N-acryloxy-succinimide) [poly(nBA-NAS)] microspheres, an enzyme immobilization matrix, was synthesized using photopolymerization in an emulsion form. AOX-poly(nBA-NAS) microspheres were deposited on a pH transducer made from a layer of photocured and self-plasticized polyacrylate membrane with an entrapped pH ionophore coated on a Ag/AgCl screen printed electrode (SPE). Oxidation of formaldehyde by the immobilized AOX resulted in the production of protons, which can be determined via the pH transducer. Effects of buffer concentrations, pH and different amount of immobilization matrix towards the biosensor's analytical performance were investigated. The formaldehyde biosensor exhibited a dynamic linear response range to formaldehyde from 0.3-316.2 mM and a sensitivity of 59.41 ± 0.66 mV/decade (R(2) = 0.9776, n = 3). The lower detection limit of the biosensor was 0.3 mM, while reproducibility and repeatability were 3.16% RSD (relative standard deviation) and 1.11% RSD, respectively (n = 3). The use of acrylic microspheres in the potentiometric formaldehyde biosensor improved the biosensor's performance in terms of response time, linear response range and long term stability when compared with thick film immobilization methods.
Biosensors fabricated with whole-cell bacteria appear to be suitable for detecting bioavailability and toxicity effects of the chemical(s) of concern, but they are usually reported to have drawbacks like long response times (ranging from hours to days), narrow dynamic range and instability during long term storage. Our aim is to fabricate a sensitive whole-cell oxidative stress biosensor which has improved properties that address the mentioned weaknesses. In this paper, we report a novel high-throughput whole-cell biosensor fabricated by immobilizing roGFP2 expressing Escherichia coli cells in a k-carrageenan matrix, for the detection of oxidative stress challenged by metalloid compounds. The E. coli roGFP2 oxidative stress biosensor shows high sensitivity towards arsenite and selenite, with wide linear range and low detection limit (arsenite: 1.0 × 10(-3)-1.0 × 10(1) mg·L(-1), LOD: 2.0 × 10(-4) mg·L(-1); selenite: 1.0 × 10(-5)-1.0 × 10(2) mg·L(-1), LOD: 5.8 × 10(-6) mg·L(-1)), short response times (0-9 min), high stability and reproducibility. This research is expected to provide a new direction in performing high-throughput environmental toxicity screening with living bacterial cells which is capable of measuring the bioavailability and toxicity of environmental stressors in a friction of a second.
A novel approach for the determination of Al(3+) from aqueous samples was developed using an optode membrane produced by physical inclusion of Al(3+) selective reagent, which is morin into a plasticized poly(vinyl chloride). The inclusion of Triton X-100 was found to be valuable and useful for enhancing the sorption of Al(3+) ions from liquid phase into the membrane phase, thus increasing the intensity of optode's absorption. The optode showed a linear increase in the absorbance at λ(max)=425 nm over the concentration range of 1.85×10(-6)-1.1×10(-4) mol L(-1) (0.05-3 μg mL(-1)) of Al(3+) ions in aqueous solution after 5 min. The limit of detection was determined to be 1.04×10(-6) mol L(-1) (0.028 μg mL(-1)). The optode developed in the present work was easily prepared and found to be stable, has good mechanical strength, sensitive and reusable. In addition, the optode was tested for Al(3+) determination in lake water, river water and pharmaceutical samples, which the result was satisfactory.
This paper reports the use of a polymer inclusion membranes (PIMs) for direct determination of Al(III) ions in natural water by using a fluorescence based optode. The best composition of the PIMs consisted of 60 wt.% (m/m) poly (vinyl chloride) (PVC) as the base polymer, 20 wt.% (m/m) triton X-100 as an extractant, 20 wt.% (m/m) dioctyl phthalate (DOP) as plasticizer and morin as the reagent, was used in this study. The inclusion of triton X-100 was used for enhancing the sorption of Al(III) ions from liquid phase into the membrane phase, thus increasing the optode fluorescence intensity. The optimized optode was characterized by a linear calibration curve in the range from 7.41 × 10(-7) to 1.00 × 10(-4) molL(-1) of Al(III), with a detection limit of 5.19 × 10(-7) molL(-1). The response of the optode was 4 min and reproducible results were obtained for eight different membranes demonstrated good membrane stability. The optode was applied to the determination of Al(III) in natural water samples. The result obtained is comparable to atomic absorption spectrometry method.
Chili hotness is very much dependent on the concentration of capsaicin present in the chili fruit. A new biosensor based on a horseradish peroxidase enzyme-capsaicin reaction mediated by ferrocene has been successfully developed for the amperometric determination of chili hotness. The amperometric biosensor is fabricated based on a single-step immobilization of both ferrocene and horseradish peroxidase in a photocurable hydrogel membrane, poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate). With mediation by ferrocene, the biosensor could measure capsaicin concentrations at a potential 0.22 V (vs. Ag/AgCl), which prevented potential interference from other electroactive species in the sample. Thus a good selectivity towards capsaicin was demonstrated. The linear response range of the biosensor towards capsaicin was from 2.5-99.0 µM with detection limit of 1.94 µM. A good relative standard deviation (RSD) for reproducibility of 6.4%-9.9% was obtained. The capsaicin biosensor demonstrated long-term stability for up to seven months. The performance of the biosensor has been validated using a standard method for the analysis of capsaicin based on HPLC.
Whole cell biosensors always face the challenge of low stability of biological components and short storage life. This paper reports the effects of poly(2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate) (pHEMA) immobilization on a whole cell fluorescence biosensor for the detection of heavy metals (Cu, Pb, Cd), and pesticides (dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D), and chlorpyrifos). The biosensor was produced by entrapping the cyanobacterium Anabaena torulosa on a cellulose membrane, followed by applying a layer of pHEMA, and attaching it to a well. The well was then fixed to an optical probe which was connected to a fluorescence spectrophotometer and an electronic reader. The optimization of the biosensor using several factors such as amount of HEMA and drying temperature were undertaken. The detection limits of biosensor without pHEMA for Cu, Cd, Pb, 2,4-D and chlorpyrifos were 1.195, 0.027, 0.0100, 0.025 and 0.025 µg/L respectively. The presence of pHEMA increased the limits of detection to 1.410, 0.250, 0.500, 0.235 and 0.117 µg/L respectively. pHEMA is known to enhance the reproducibility of the biosensor with average relative standard deviation (RSD) of ±1.76% for all the pollutants tested, 48% better than the biosensor without pHEMA (RSD = ±3.73%). In storability test with Cu 5 µg/L, the biosensor with pHEMA performed 11.5% better than the test without pHEMA on day-10 and 5.2% better on day-25. pHEMA is therefore a good candidate to be used in whole cell biosensors as it increases reproducibility and enhances biosensor storability.
New acrylic microspheres were synthesised by photopolymerisation where the succinimide functional group was incorporated during the microsphere preparation. An optical biosensor for urea based on reflectance transduction with a large linear response range to urea was successfully developed using this material. The biosensor utilized succinimide-modified acrylic microspheres immobilized with a Nile blue chromoionophore (ETH 5294) for optical detection and urease enzyme was immobilized on the surface of the microspheres via the succinimide groups. No leaching of the enzyme or chromoionophore was observed. Hydrolysis of the urea by urease changes the pH and leads to a color change of the immobilized chromoionophore. When the color change was monitored by reflectance spectrophotometry, the linear response range of the biosensor to urea was from 0.01 to 1,000 mM (R2 = 0.97) with a limit of detection of 9.97 μM. The biosensor response showed good reproducibility (relative standard deviation = 1.43%, n = 5) with no interference by major cations such as Na+, K+, NH4+ and Mg2+. The use of reflectance as a transduction method led to a large linear response range that is better than that of many urea biosensors based on other optical transduction methods.
Electrochemical biosensors for phenolic compound determination were developed by immobilization of tyrosinase enzyme in a series of methacrylic-acrylic based biosensor membranes deposited directly using a photocuring method. By modifying the hydrophilicity of the membranes using different proportions of 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (HEMA) and butyl acrylate (nBA), we developed biosensor membranes of different hydrophilic characters. The differences in hydrophilicity of these membranes led to changes in the sensitivity of the biosensors towards different phenolic compounds. In general biosensors constructed from the methacrylic-acrylic based membranes showed the poorest response to catechol relative to other phenolic compounds, which is in contrast to many other biosensors based on tyrosinase. The decrease in hydrophilicity of the membrane also allowed better selectivity towards chlorophenols. However, phenol biosensors constructed from the more hydrophilic membrane materials demonstrated better analytical performance towards phenol compared with those made from less hydrophilic ones. For the detection of phenols, these biosensors with different membranes gave detection limits of 0.13-0.25 microM and linear response range from 6.2-54.2 microM phenol. The phenol biosensors also showed good phenol recovery from landfill leachate samples (82-117%).
A new approach for the development of a highly sensitive aluminium(III) ion sensor via the preconcentration of aluminium(III) ion with a self-assembled monolayer on a gold nanoparticles modified screen-printed carbon electrode and current mediation by potassium ferricyanide redox behavior during aluminium(III) ion binding has been attempted. A monolayer of mercaptosuccinic acid served as an effective complexation ligand for the preconcentration of trace aluminium; this led to an enhancement of aluminium(III) ion capture and thus improved the sensitivity of the sensor with a detection limit of down to the ppb level. Under the optimum experimental conditions, the sensor exhibited a wide linear dynamic range from 0.041 to 12.4 μM. The lower detection limit of the developed sensor was 0.037 μM (8.90 ppb) using a 10 min preconcentration time. The sensor showed excellent selectivity towards aluminium(III) ion over other interference ions.
An optical urea biosensor was fabricated by stacking several layers of sol-gelfilms. The stacking of the sol-gel films allowed the immobilization of a Nile Bluechromoionophore (ETH 5294) and urease enzyme separately without the need of anychemical attachment procedure. The absorbance response of the biosensor was monitoredat 550 nm, i.e. the deprotonation of the chromoionophore. This multi-layer sol-gel filmformat enabled higher enzyme loading in the biosensor to be achieved. The urea opticalbiosensor constructed from three layers of sol-gel films that contained urease demonstrateda much wider linear response range of up to 100 mM urea when compared with biosensorsthat constructed from 1-2 layers of films. Analysis of urea in urine samples with thisoptical urea biosensor yielded results similar to that determined by a spectrophotometricmethod using the reagent p-dimethylaminobenzaldehyde (R² = 0.982, n = 6). The averagerecovery of urea from urine samples using this urea biosensor is approximately 103%.
Multi-wall carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) were modified to design a new DNA biosensor. Functionalized MWCNTs were equipped with gold nanoparticles (GNPs) (~15nm) (GNP-MWCNTCOOH) to construct DNA biosensors based on carbon-paste screen-printed (SPE) electrodes. GNP attachment onto functionalized MWCNTs was carried out by microwave irradiation and was confirmed by spectroscopic studies and surface analysis. DNA biosensors based on differential pulse voltammetry (DPV) were constructed by immobilizing thiolated single-stranded DNA probes onto GNP-MWCNTCOOH. Ruthenium (III) chloride hexaammoniate [Ru(NH3)6,2Cl(-)] (RuHex) was used as hybridization redox indicator. RuHex and MWCNT interaction was low in compared to other organic redox hybridization indicators. The linear response range for DNA determination was 1×10(-21) to 1×10(-9)M with a lower detection limit of 1.55×10(-21)M. Thus, the attachment of GNPs onto functionalized MWCNTs yielded sensitive DNA biosensor with low detection limit and stability more than 30days. Constructed electrode was used to determine gender of arowana fish.
A novel disposable electrochemical biosensor based on immobilized calf thymus double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) on the carbon-based screen-printed electrode (SPE) is developed for rapid biorecognition of carrageenan by using methylene blue (MB) redox indicator. The biosensor protocol for the detection of carrageenan is based on the concept of competitive binding of positively charged MB to the negatively charged dsDNA and carrageenan. The decrement in the MB cathodic peak current (ipc) signal as a result of the released MB from the immobilized dsDNA, and attracted to the carrageenan can be monitored via differential pulse voltammetry (DPV). The biosensor showed high sensitivity and selectivity to carrageenan at low concentration without interference from other polyanions such as alginate, gum arabic and starch. Calibration of the biosensor with carrageenan exhibited an excellent linear dependence from 1-10 mg L-1 (R2 = 0.98) with a detection limit of 0.08 mg L-1. The DNA-based carrageenan biosensor showed satisfactory reproducibility with 5.6-6.9% (n = 3) relative standard deviations (RSD), and possessing several advantages such as simplicity, fast and direct application to real sample analysis without any prior extensive sample treatments, particularly for seaweeds and food analyses.
Carrageenans are linear sulphated polysaccharides that are commonly added into confectionery products but may exert a detrimental effect to human health. A new and simpler way of carrageenan determination based on an optical sensor utilizing a methylcellulose/poly(n-butyl acrylate) (Mc/PnBA) composite membrane with immobilized methylene blue (MB) was developed. The hydrophilic Mc polymer membrane was successfully modified with a more hydrophobic acrylic polymer. This was to produce an insoluble membrane at room temperature where MB reagent could be immobilized to build an optical sensor for carrageenan analysis. The fluorescence intensity of MB in the composite membrane was found to be proportional to the carrageenan concentrations in a linear manner (1.0-20.0 mg L-1, R2 = 0.992) and with a detection limit at 0.4 mg L-1. Recovery of spiked carrageenan into commercial fruit juice products showed percentage recoveries between 90% and 102%. The optical sensor has the advantages of improved sensitivity and better selectivity to carrageenan when compared to other types of hydrocolloids. Its sensitivity was comparable to most sophisticated techniques for carageenan analysis but better than other types of optical sensors. Thus, this sensor provides a simple, rapid, and sensitive means for carageenan analysis.
In this article a luminescence fiber optic biosensor for the microdetection of heavy metal toxicity in waters based on the marine bacterium Aliivibrio fischeri (A. fischeri) encapsulated in alginate microspheres is described. Cu(II), Cd(II), Pb(II), Zn(II), Cr(VI), Co(II), Ni(II), Ag(I) and Fe(II) were selected as sample toxic heavy metal ions for evaluation of the performance of this toxicity microbiosensor. The loss of bioluminescence response from immobilized A. fischeri bacterial cells corresponds to changes in the toxicity levels. The inhibition of the luminescent biosensor response collected at excitation and emission wavelengths of 287 ± 2 nm and 487 ± 2 nm, respectively, was found to be reproducible and repeatable within the relative standard deviation (RSD) range of 2.4-5.7% (n = 8). The toxicity biosensor based on alginate micropsheres exhibited a lower limit of detection (LOD) for Cu(II) (6.40 μg/L), Cd(II) (1.56 μg/L), Pb(II) (47 μg/L), Ag(I) (18 μg/L) than Zn(II) (320 μg/L), Cr(VI) (1,000 μg/L), Co(II) (1700 μg/L), Ni(II) (2800 μg/L), and Fe(III) (3100 μg/L). Such LOD values are lower when compared with other previous reported whole cell toxicity biosensors using agar gel, agarose gel and cellulose membrane biomatrices used for the immobilization of bacterial cells. The A. fischeri bacteria microencapsulated in alginate biopolymer could maintain their metabolic activity for a prolonged period of up to six weeks without any noticeable changes in the bioluminescence response. The bioluminescent biosensor could also be used for the determination of antagonistic toxicity levels for toxicant mixtures. A comparison of the results obtained by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS) and using the proposed luminescent A. fischeri-based biosensor suggests that the optical toxicity biosensor can be used for quantitative microdetermination of heavy metal toxicity in environmental water samples.
Median enterococci counts of beach water samples gradually increased at statistically significant levels (χ2: 26.53, df: 4; p<0.0001) with increasing proximity to river influx. The difference in proportion of antibiotic resistant enterococci in beach water and river water samples was statistically significant (p<0.05) for the tested antibiotics with river isolates generally presenting higher resistance frequencies. Virulence genes cyl, esp, gelE and asa were detected at varying frequencies (7.32%, 21.95%, 100% and 63.41% respectively) among river isolates. On the other hand, the prevalence of these genes was lower (0%, 20%, 67.27% and 41.82% respectively) among beach water isolates. Multi-Locus-Sequence-Typing analysis of Enterococcus faecalis presented four sequence types (ST) one of which shared six out of seven tested loci with ST6, a member of the clonal complex of multi-drug resistant strains associated with hospital outbreaks.
A novel method for the rapid modification of fullerene for subsequent enzyme attachment to create a potentiometric biosensor is presented. Urease was immobilized onto the modified fullerene nanomaterial. The modified fullerene-immobilized urease (C60-urease) bioconjugate has been confirmed to catalyze the hydrolysis of urea in solution. The biomaterial was then deposited on a screen-printed electrode containing a non-plasticized poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PnBA) membrane entrapped with a hydrogen ionophore. This pH-selective membrane is intended to function as a potentiometric urea biosensor with the deposition of C60-urease on the PnBA membrane. Various parameters for fullerene modification and urease immobilization were investigated. The optimal pH and concentration of the phosphate buffer for the urea biosensor were 7.0 and 0.5 mM, respectively. The linear response range of the biosensor was from 2.31 × 10-3 M to 8.28 × 10-5 M. The biosensor's sensitivity was 59.67 ± 0.91 mV/decade, which is close to the theoretical value. Common cations such as Na+, K+, Ca2+, Mg2+ and NH4+ showed no obvious interference with the urea biosensor's response. The use of a fullerene-urease bio-conjugate and an acrylic membrane with good adhesion prevented the leaching of urease enzyme and thus increased the stability of the urea biosensor for up to 140 days.
Tourism-related activities such as the heavy use of boats for transportation are a significant source of petroleum hydrocarbons that may harm the ecosystem of Langkawi Island. The contamination and toxicity levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) in the sediments of Langkawi were evaluated using sediment quality guidelines (SQGs) and toxic equivalent factors. Ten samples were collected from jetties and fish farms around the island in December 2010. A gas chromatography/flame ionization detector (GC/FID) was used to analyse the 18 PAHs. The concentration of total PAHs was found to range from 869 ± 00 to 1637 ± 20 ng g⁻¹ with a mean concentration of 1167.00 ± 24 ng g⁻¹, lower than the SQG effects range-low (3442 ng g⁻¹). The results indicated that PAHs may not cause acute biological damage. Diagnostic ratios and principal component analysis suggested that the PAHs were likely to originate from pyrogenic and petrogenic sources. The toxic equivalent concentrations of the PAHs ranged from 76.3 to 177 ng TEQ/g d.w., which is lower compared to similar studies. The results of mean effects range-median quotient of the PAHs were lower than 0.1, which indicate an 11% probability of toxicity effect. Hence, the sampling sites were determined to be the low-priority sites.
The characteristics of a potentiometric biosensor for the determination of permethrin in treated wood based on immobilised cells of the fungus Lentinus sajor-caju on a potentiometric transducer are reported this paper. The potentiometric biosensor was prepared by immobilisation of the fungus in alginate gel deposited on a pH-sensitive transducer employing a photocurable acrylic matrix. The biosensor gave a good response in detecting permethrin over the range of 1.0-100.0 µM. The slope of the calibration curve was 56.10 mV/decade with detection limit of 1.00 µM. The relative standard deviation for the sensor reproducibility was 4.86%. The response time of the sensor was 5 min at optimum pH 8.0 with 1.00 mg/electrode of fungus L. sajor-caju. The permethrin biosensor performance was compared with the conventional method for permethrin analysis using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), and the analytical results agreed well with the HPLC method (at 95% confidence limit). There was no interference from commonly used organophosphorus pesticides such as diazinon, parathion, paraoxon, and methyl parathion.
There is currently no established bacteriological beach quality monitoring (BQM) program in place in Malaysia. To initiate cost-effective, sustainable bacteriological BQM schemes for the ultimate goal of protecting public health, policy decision makers need to be provided robust, indigenous empirical findings that validate appropriate water quality parameters for inclusion in such monitoring programs. This is the first study that assesses the validity of enterococci as an ideal indicator for bacteriological BQM in Malaysia using a multivariate approach. Beach water and sand samples from 7 beach locations were analyzed for a total of twenty-one microbial and non-microbial water quality parameters. A multivariate approach incorporating cluster analyses (CA), principal component analyses (PCA), and factor analysis (FA) was also adopted. Apart from the weak correlations of Staphylococcus aureus with concentrations of Vibro species (r = 0.302, p = 0.037) and total coliforms (r = 0.392, p = 0.006) in seawater, no correlation existed between S. aureus concentration and other parameters. Faecal coliforms failed to correlate with any of the tested parameters. Enterococci also correlated with more quality parameters than faecal coliforms or any other indicator. Multiple linear regressions highlighted a significant, best fit model that could predict enterococci concentrations in relation to other parameters with a maximum predictive success of 69.64%. PCA/FA clearly delineated enterococci and faecal coliforms as parameters that weighed strongly for BQM while Staphylococcus aureus, faecal coliforms and enterococci weighed strongly for beach sand quality monitoring. On the whole, higher correlations of enterococci levels with other parameters than was observed for faecal coliforms suggest that the former be considered a preferred parameter of choice for BQM in Malaysia. Our findings provide meaningful evidence particularly as it relates to the correlation of Enterococci with pathogens and other non-microbial parameters. It also provides empirical data to validate the applicability of the enterococci indicator paradigm for bacteriological beach quality monitoring in Malaysia. The current study thus provides policy decision makers evidenced based approach to parameter streamlining for optimized beach sampling and sustainable bacteriological quality monitoring.