Nanotechnology pp 319-359 | Cite as

Nanocomposites: Future Trends and Perspectives Towards Affinity Biosensor

  • Ajay Kumar Gupta
  • Murthy Chavali YadavEmail author


Nanocomposite materials are being increasingly developed in the area of affinity biosensors for the diagnosis of multiple infections and diseases for personalised health care. Nanocomposite platforms with high functionalities, high electroactive surface, biocompatibility and multiple attachments charged sites made them as an effective solid support for immobilisation of biomolecules with retained biological activity and desired orientation/confirmation. These nanocomposites made themselves as a part of the transducer and interfaced with bio-recognition for achieving highly enhanced sensing performance. This chapter highlights about nanocomposites and their roles towards development and improvement of affinity biosensors.


Electrochemical biosensor Nanocomposite Affinity biosensors Immunosensors DNA sensors 



The authors are thankful to the VFSTR University Management, Guntur, for providing the necessary facilities. Author AKG is thankful to the publishers for granting permission to reuse figures.



In this technique, current response is monitored with a fixed potential. It uses three-electrode systems, i.e. a working electrode, a reference electrode and a counter-electrode. In this technique, current is measured between working and the counter-electrode by applying the potential between working and reference electrodes.


A process in which a substance is heated above the recrystallisation temperature maintained at a suitable temperature and then cooled. Annealing is used for recrystallisation and grain growth.

Anodic stripping voltammetry 

An electrolytic method with Hg (mercury) electrode forms amalgam with metal ions in solution by reduction at a positive potential. In this voltammetric technique, the solution is to be stirred in order to overcome the deficiency of metal ions near the electrode as much as possible for amalgam formation.


These are globulin proteins and used for identifying and neutralising antigens by immune defence system.


It is a macromolecule (nucleic acid) and tightly binds with molecular target specifically. Its length is typically 15–40 nucleotides long in a linear sequence of A, G, T, C and U similar to other nucleic acids.

Atomic force microscope 

Atomic force microscope (AFM) is a high-resolution microscopy with mechanical scanning probe (cantilever) which interacts with the surface in various modes and gathered.


The bandgap is energy gap in eV between the valence band and conduction band in case of insulators and semiconductors.


A type of catalysis where natural catalysts (such as proteins and enzymes) are used to perform chemical reactions.


The biosensor is a combination of the transducer (physicochemical detector) and biological recognition component. It is used for analyte detection.

Bismuth film electrode 

This is a very attractive alternative to a common mercury electrode used for adsorptive stripping voltammetric measurements of trace metals.


This is the capability of the capacitor to store charge on either plate separated by applied voltage.


Chitosan is a combination of N-acetyl-d-glucosamine and β-(1–4)-linked d-glucosamine which is acetylated and deacetylated unit, respectively. Commercially, it is linear polysaccharide and produced by deacetylation of chitin deacetylation process. Chitin is found as a structural unit in crustacean’s exoskeleton.


Cross-linkers are the agents which make chemical bonds between two or more molecules by means of interaction of their active groups with other groups including amines and sulfhydryl groups. They are generally used in the analysis of structure and function of protein, to anchor proteins to solid supports. They are divided into two types, viz. homobifunctional and heterobifunctional. Homobifunctional are used in one-step reactions, whereas heterobifunctional is used in two-step reactions.

Cyclic voltammetry 

Cyclic voltammetry is one of the the most frequently used electrochemical techniques for measuring electrochemical properties of a redox species in solution by applying repetitive triangular excitation signal in the form of potential onto the working electrode in order to sweep (in cyclic mode) between two values. In this technique, current Vs. the potential graph is plotted which is known as cyclic voltammogram.

Differential-pulse voltammetry 

Differential-pulse voltammetry is an electrochemical measurement technique in which applied potential is in the form of pulse and current is measured at the end of each pulse.

Electrical conductivity 

Electrical conductivity is a material’s properties, and it is a measurement of current when a potential difference is applied across conducting materials.


ELISA is an immunoassay technique and stands for enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. This bioassay technique is used in immunosensor.


It is an electron–hole bound pair and forms after absorption of a photon in the semiconductor which resulted into excitation of an electron from the valence band to conduction band. Thus the hole created in valence band after excitation of electron attracts another electron due to developed Coulomb force.

Field emission scanning electron microscope 

FESEM works near atomic resolution and is used in materials science mainly for topography study and their electronic properties.

Flavin adenine dinucleotide 

This is a redox cofactor and derivative of vitamin B2. It has two different redox states and interchange between these two states during its biochemical activity. FAD is also used as a prosthetic group for electron-transfer process in several oxidoreductases enzyme and protein such as flavoenzymes or flavoproteins that functions in electron transfer.

Ion-selective electrode 

Ion-selective electrodes are used in potentiometric techniques and respond to an ion selectively in presence of other ions.

Isoelectric potential 

Isoelectric potential (IEP) corresponds to pH at which a metal oxide/enzyme has a net electrical charge equal to zero.


Nafion is a sulfonated tetrafluoroethylene-based copolymer in which perfluoro vinyl ether groups terminated with sulfonate groups are incorporated into tetrafluoroethylene which is considered as the backbone in Nafion. It possesses ionic properties for the above-mentioned reason and, hence, also known as ionomers. Nafion has good mechanical and thermal stability. And this is the reason of Nafion acts as a good proton conductor.


The oligonucleotide is a short polymer of 2–20 nucleotides.

Redox mediator 

The redox mediator is the mediator which is used in redox reactions to facilitate the electron-transfer reaction by interaction with redox enzyme. The redox mediator is different from redox enzyme in their hydrophilicity. Examples are TCNQ, Ferrocene, TTF, etc.

Square-wave voltammetry 

This is a voltammetric technique and can also be used as a particular type of differential-pulse voltammetry in which equal time is spent at the potential of ramped baseline and of the superimposed pulse.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre of Excellence for Advanced Materials, Manufacturing, Processing and Characterization (CoExAMMPC)Vignan’s Foundation for Science Technology and Research University (VFSTRU; Vignan’s University)GunturIndia
  2. 2.Division of Chemistry, Department of Sciences and HumanitiesVignan’s Foundation for Science Technology and Research University (VFSTRU; Vignan’s University)GunturIndia

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