Single-molecule detection with a millimetre-sized transistor

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: Macchia E, Manoli K, Holzer B, Di Franco C, Ghittorelli M, Torricelli F, Alberga D, Mangiatordi GF, Palazzo G, Scamarcio G, Torsi L
Publication year: 2018
Journal: Nature Communications
Journal acronym: NAT COMMUN
Volume number: 9
Number of pages: 10
ISSN: 2041-1723


Label-free single-molecule detection has been achieved so far by funnelling a large number of ligands into a sequence of single-binding events with few recognition elements host on nanometric transducers. Such approaches are inherently unable to sense a cue in a bulk milieu. Conceptualizing cells' ability to sense at the physical limit by means of highly-packed recognition elements, a millimetric sized field-effect-transistor is used to detect a single molecule. To this end, the gate is bio-functionalized with a self-assembled-monolayer of 1012 capturing anti-Immunoglobulin-G and is endowed with a hydrogen-bonding network enabling cooperative interactions. The selective and label-free single molecule IgG detection is strikingly demonstrated in diluted saliva while 15 IgGs are assayed in whole serum. The suggested sensing mechanism, triggered by the affinity binding event, involves a work-function change that is assumed to propagate in the gating-field through the electrostatic hydrogen-bonding network. The proposed immunoassay platform is general and can revolutionize the current approach to protein detection.

Last updated on 2019-12-11 at 03:42

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