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Langmuir. 2013 Jun 18;29(24):7488-98. doi: 10.1021/la3045779. Epub 2013 Feb 11.

Bioaffinity sensor based on nanoarchitectonic films: control of the specific adsorption of proteins through the dual role of an ethylene oxide spacer.

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Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Unité Propre de Recherche 22, Institut Charles Sadron, Strasbourg, France.


The identification and quantification of biomarkers or proteins is a real challenge in allowing the early detection of diseases. The functionalization of the biosensor surface has to be properly designed to prevent nonspecific interactions and to detect the biomolecule of interest specifically. A multilayered nanoarchitecture, based on polyelectrolyte multilayers (PEM) and the sequential immobilization of streptavidin and a biotinylated antibody, was elaborated as a promising platform for the label-free sensing of targeted proteins. We choose ovalbumin as an example. Thanks to the versatility of PEM films, the platform was built on two types of sensor surface and was evaluated using both optical- and viscoelastic-based techniques, namely, optical waveguide lightmode spectroscopy and the quartz crystal microbalance, respectively. A library of biotinylated poly(acrylic acids) (PAAs) was synthesized by grafting biotin moieties at different grafting ratios (GR). The biotin moieties were linked to the PAA chains through ethylene oxide (EO) spacers of different lengths. The adsorption of the PAA-EOn-biotin (GR) layer on a PEM precursor film allows tuning the surface density in biotin and thus the streptavidin adsorption mainly through the grafting ratio. The nonspecific adsorption of serum was reduced and even suppressed depending on the length of the EO arms. We showed that to obtain an antifouling polyelectrolyte the grafting of EO9 or EO19 chains at 25% in GR is sufficient. Thus, the spacer has a dual role: ensuring the antifouling property and allowing the accessibility of biotin moieties. Finally, an optimized platform based on the PAA-EO9-biotin (25%)/streptavidin/biotinylated-antibody architecture was built and demonstrated promising performance as interface architecture for bioaffinity sensing of a targeted protein, in our case, ovalbumin.

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