A label-free aptasensor FET based on Au nanoparticle decorated Co3O4 nanorods and a SWCNT layer for detection of cardiac troponin T protein
Acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is a serious health problem that must be identified in its early stages. Considerable progress has been made in understanding the condition of AMI through ascertaining the role of biomarkers, such as myoglobin, cardiac troponin proteins (T and I), creatine kinase-MB, and fatty acid-binding protein (FABP). A field-effect transistor (FET) is an effective platform; however, innovations are required in all layers of the FET for it to become robust and highly sensitive. For the first time, we made use of the synergistic combination of noble metal nanoparticles (AuNPs) with Co3O4 for the detection of cardiac troponin T (cTnT) in a FET platform. We determined the morphology of Au-decorated Co3O4 NRs and their electronic properties by characterizing the channel layer using electron microscopies and transient measurements. Subsequently, we performed the detection of cardiac troponin T by immobilizing its complementary biotinylated DNA aptamer on the channel surface using a drop-casting method. To understand the changes in drain current caused by this interaction, we probed our SWCNT–Co3O4 NR transistor with limited gate and drain bias (≤1 V), achieving a sensitivity of 0.5 μA μg−1 mL−1 for the Au-decorated NRs. A 250% increase in the sensitivity and a limit of detection (LOD) of 0.1 μg mL−1 were achieved by using this device. Finally, selectivity studies proved that this synergistic combination works well in the FET configuration for the successful detection of cTnT.