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Sensors (Basel). 2013 Aug 5;13(8):10014-26. doi: 10.3390/s130810014.

An amperometric biosensor utilizing a ferrocene-mediated horseradish peroxidase reaction for the determination of capsaicin (chili hotness).

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School of Chemical Sciences and Food Technology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), 43600 Bangi, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia.


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.

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