Future biosensor for continuous monitoring using molecular lookalikes

Future biosensor for continuous monitoring using molecular look-alikes
Credit: Eindhoven University of Technology

Biosensors measure the concentration of molecules in biological samples for biomedical, environmental, and industrial applications, and, ideally, they should provide real time, continuous data. However, the continuous monitoring of small molecules at low concentrations is problematic. Researchers at Eindhoven University of Technology have developed an innovative sensing approach based on molecular lookalikes. This could prove pivotal in future biosensors for monitoring health and disease.

The field of biosensors has a rich and inventive history. The “father of biosensors” is seen by many to be Leland C. Clark Jr., who designed a sensor to measure oxygen in blood in the early 1960s.

However, as happens in pioneering works, things didn’t start out as he had hoped. His initial sensor designs failed because blood components affected the sensing electrode.

Clark’s solution was to separate the electrode and the blood by a cellophane wrapper from a cigarette packet,

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