Microchimica Acta

, 186:672 | Cite as

1-Pyrene carboxylic acid functionalized carbon nanotube-gold nanoparticle nanocomposite for electrochemical sensing of dopamine and uric acid

  • Biyas Posha
  • Haritha Kuttoth
  • Neelakandapillai SandhyaraniEmail author
Original Paper


A highly sensitive, selective and cost effective method is described for sensing dopamine (DA) and uric acid (UA). A glassy carbon electrode (GCE) was modified with a nanocomposite consisting of gold nanoparticle-loaded multi-walled carbon nanotube (CNT) modified with 1-pyrene carboxylic acid (PCA). The stable aqueous dispersion of non-covalently functionalized CNT-PCA is an efficient bioprobe for the ultra sensitive and selective detection of dopamine and uric acid in the presence of the potentially interfering agent ascorbic acid (AA). The presence of PCA on the CNT introduces anionic carboxyl groups which repel ascorbate. The presence of the pyrene group augments high electrocatalytic activity towards oxidation of DA and UA, and the gold nanoparticles contribute to the amplification of the signal. The modified GCE gives an excellent peak current with well distinguishable peaks for AA, DA and UA (near −0.08 V, +0.14 V, and +0.22 V vs Ag/AgCl) in differential pulse voltammetry. Chronoamperometric detection of DA (working potential of 0.16 V vs Ag/AgCl) and UA (working potential of 0.3 V vs Ag/AgCl) showed linear ranges of 1 nM-150 μM (LOD 1 nM) and 1 μM–240 μM (LOD 1 μM) for DA and UA, respectively. The nanoprobe was validated by monitoring the recovery of spiked DA and UA in human blood serum samples which indicated a recovery within ±2%.

Graphical abstract

A glassy carbon electrode modified with a gold nanoparticle-loaded multi-walled carbon nanotube (CNT) - 1-pyrene carboxylic acid (PCA) composite was used for the sensitive and selective detection of the dopamine and uric acid.


Electrochemical biosensor Nanoprobe Ascorbic acid Neuro transmitter Electrochemical detection Selectivity Real sample analysis Interference 



We thank Kerala State Council for Science, Environment and Technology (KSCSTE) and Department of Science and Technology (DST), India for the financial support to Nano Science Research Laboratory. B.P acknowledges University Grant Commission for the research fellowship.

Compliance with ethical standards

The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

604_2019_3783_MOESM1_ESM.docx (1.3 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 1.27 mb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nanoscience Research laboratory, School of Materials Science and EngineeringNational Institute of TechnologyCalicutIndia

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