Microneedles are newly developed biomedical devices, whose advantages are mainly in the non-invasiveness, discretion and versatility of use both as diagnostics and as therapeutics tool. In fact, they can be used both for drugs delivery in the interstitial fluids and for the analysis of the interstitial fluid. In this work we present the preliminary results for two devices based on micro needles in PolyEthylene (Glycol). The first for the drugs delivery includes a membrane whose optical reflected wavelength is related to the concentration of drug. Here, we present our preliminary result in diffusion of drugs between the membrane and the microneedles. The second device is gold coated and it works as electrode for the electrochemical detection of species in the interstitial fluid. A preliminary result in detection of glucose will be shown.
Nanostructured photoluminescent materials are optimal transducers for optical biosensors due to their capacity to convert molecular interactions in light signals without contamination or deterioration of the samples. In recent years, nanostructured biosensors with low cost and readily available properties have been developed for such applications as therapeutics, diagnostic and environmental. Zinc oxide nanowires (ZnO NWs) is material with unique properties and due to these they were widely studied in many fields as electronics, optics, and photonics. ZnO NWs can be either grown independently or deposited on solid support, such as glass, gold substrates and crystalline silicon. Vertical aligned ZnO forest on a substrate shows specific advantages in photonic device fabrication. ZnO NWs are typically synthesized by such techniques classified as vapour phase and solution phase synthesis. In particular, hydrothermal methods have received a lot of attention and have been widely used for synthesis of ZnO NWs. This technique shows more crystalline defects than others due to oxygen vacancies, so as the material shows intense photoluminescence emission under laser irradiation. ZnO NWs surface is highly hydrolysed, so it is covered by OH reactive groups, and standard biomodification chemistry can be used in order to bind bioprobes on the surface. In this work, we present our newest results on synthetic nanostructured materials characterization for optical biosensors applications. In particular, we characterize the ZnO NWs structure grown on crystalline silicon by SEM images and the biomodification by photoluminesce technique, fluorescence microscopy, water contact angle and FT-IR measurements.
Porous silicon (PSi) non-symmetric multilayers are modified by organic molecular beam deposition of an organic semiconductor, namely the N,N’-1H,1H-perfluorobutyldicyanoperylene-carboxydi-imide (PDIF-CN2). Joule evaporation of PDIF-CN2 into the PSi sponge-like matrix not only improves but also adds transducing skills, making this solid-state device a dual (optical and electrical) signal sensor for biochemical monitoring. PDIF-CN2 modified PSi optical microcavities show an increase of about 5 orders of magnitude in electric current with respect to the same bare device. This feature can be used to sense volatile substances.
Interfaces play a key role in optical biosensor fabrication: biological molecules need to be integrated with inorganic transducers, both electrical and optical, preserving their functions and specificity. Single DNA stands, proteins, enzymes, and antibodies must be blocked on surface by absorption or covalently, depending on different chemistry used. In case of proteins and antibodies, also orientation of biological molecules is very important. In this work, we present our results on a biological passivation procedure that employs hydophobins, small amphiphilic proteins. Since these proteins complex with sugars in nature, we also suggest their utilization as functional layer in optical biosensor for glucose.