A conjugated carbon-dot–tyrosinase bioprobe for highly selective and sensitive detection of dopamine†
In this work, a bioprobe for the detection of dopamine was designed and fabricated through covalently linking fluorescent carbon dots (CDs) and tyrosinase (TYR). The bioprobe (named CDs–TYR) can catalyze oxidation of dopamine and produce dopaquinone, and consequently the fluorescence of the CDs was quenched due to an efficient electron transfer mechanism from excited CDs to dopaquinone. The fluorescence intensity of CDs decreased in a dopamine-concentration-dependent manner, which built the foundation of dopamine quantification. The bioprobe provided a wide linear range from 0.1 to 6.0 μM for dopamine sensing. Additionally, excellent selectivity of the bioprobe to dopamine was achieved because of the specific catalytic character of the conjugated TYR. Furthermore, the bioprobe was successfully employed for the detection of dopamine in spiked human serum. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first example of the construction of a bioprobe through conjugating CDs and an enzyme. This work would open new opportunities to develop CD-based photoinduced electron transfer bioprobes for other analytes via linking typical enzymes onto CDs.