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Issue 24, 2014
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Functional nucleic acid-based sensors for heavy metal ion assays

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Abstract

Heavy metal contaminants such as lead ions (Pb2+), mercury ions (Hg2+) and silver ions (Ag+) can cause significant harm to humans and generate enduring bioaccumulation in ecological systems. Even though a variety of methods have been developed for Pb2+, Hg2+ and Ag+ assays, most of them are usually laborious and time-consuming with poor sensitivity. Due to their unique advantages of excellent catalytic properties and high affinity for heavy metal ions, functional nucleic acids such as DNAzymes and aptamers show great promise in the development of novel sensors for heavy metal ion assays. In this review, we summarize the development of functional nucleic acid-based sensors for the detection of Pb2+, Hg2+ and Ag+, and especially focus on two categories including the direct assay and the amplification-based assay. We highlight the emerging trends in the development of sensitive and selective sensors for heavy metal ion assays as well.

Graphical abstract: Functional nucleic acid-based sensors for heavy metal ion assays

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Article information


Submitted
12 Jun 2014
Accepted
23 Sep 2014
First published
25 Sep 2014

Analyst, 2014,139, 6326-6342
Article type
Critical Review

Functional nucleic acid-based sensors for heavy metal ion assays

G. Zhu and C. Zhang, Analyst, 2014, 139, 6326
DOI: 10.1039/C4AN01069H

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