Selective electrochemical detection of dopamine in a microfluidic channel on carbon nanoparticulate electrodes†
There is a continuous need for the construction of detection systems in microfluidic devices. In particular, electrochemical detection allows the separation of signals from the analyte and interfering substances in the potential domain. Here, a simple microfluidic device for the sensitive and selective determination of dopamine in the presence of interfering substances was constructed and tested. It employs a carbon nanoparticulate electrode allowing the separation of voltammetric signals of dopamine and common interfering substances (ascorbic acid and acetaminophen) both in quiescent conditions and in flow due to the electrocatalytic effect. These voltammograms were also successfully simulated. The limit of detection of dopamine detected by square wave voltammetry in 1 mM solutions of interfering substances in phosphate buffered saline is about 100 nM. In human serum a clear voltammetric signal could be seen for a 200 nM solution, sufficient to detect dopamine in the cerebral fluid. Flow injection analysis allows a decrease in the limit of detection down to 3.5 nM.