A. Bandremer, A. Hebert, S.D. Torosian, D. Battacharyya, K. Gleason, S.K. McGraw, A. Senecal, P. Marek
Food and Drug Administration, US
biosensor, conductive polymer
Effective food safety monitoring is challenged by the necessity to identify human infection capable microorganisms at sufficient infective doses and consumption levels. Regulatory agencies have developed methods for assessing food safety based on currently available technologies. Many of these technologies, however, require time-consuming amplification to produce a sufficient detection signal. While improvements have been made to these current technologies offering increased sensitivity and decreased sample time, the new field of nanotechnology offers the potential for dramatic improvements. A wide variety of materials including electrospun and melt-spun fibers can be prepared and coated with conductive polymers to create membrane based biosensors. The conducting monomers thiophene-3-acetic acid (TAA), with an accessible carboxyl functional group, and 3-thiopheneethanol (3-TE), with an accessible hydroxyl group, have been successfully co-polymerized with 3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (EDOT) onto various types of fibers utilizing oxidative vapor deposition. The functional groups of the co-polymers are used to covalently attach proteins to the surface of the platform for binding targets. Electrochemical methods utilizing resistance and potentiostatic based measurements have been employed to detect targets of interest.