Recent advances in surface functionalization techniques on polymethacrylate materials for optical biosensor applications
Biosensor chips for immune-based assay systems have been investigated for their application in early diagnostics. The development of such systems strongly depends on the effective protein immobilization on polymer substrates. In order to achieve this complex heterogeneous interaction the polymer surface must be functionalized with chemical groups that are reactive towards proteins in a way that surface functional groups (such as carboxyl, –COOH; amine, –NH2; and hydroxyl, –OH) chemically or physically anchor the proteins to the polymer platform. Since the proteins are very sensitive towards their environment and can easily lose their activity when brought in close proximity to the solid surface, effective surface functionalization and high level of control over surface chemistry present the most important steps in the fabrication of biosensors. This paper reviews recent developments in surface functionalization and preparation of polymethacrylates for protein immobilization. Due to their versatility and cost effectiveness, this particular group of plastic polymers is widely used both in research and in industry.