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Quantitative measurements of C-reactive protein using silicon nanowire arrays

Authors Lee M, Lee K, Jung S, Kim W, Shin K, Seong W

Published 7 March 2008 Volume 2008:3(1) Pages 117—124


Min-Ho Lee, Kuk-Nyung Lee, Suk-Won Jung, Won-Hyo Kim, Kyu-Sik Shin, Woo-Kyeong Seong

Korea Electronics Technology Institute, Gyeonggi, Korea

Abstract: A silicon nanowire-based sensor for biological application showed highly desirable electrical responses to either pH changes or receptor-ligand interactions such as protein disease markers, viruses, and DNA hybridization. Furthermore, because the silicon nanowire can display results in real-time, it may possess superior characteristics for biosensing than those demonstrated in previously studied methods. However, despite its promising potential and advantages, certain process-related limitations of the device, due to its size and material characteristics, need to be addressed. In this article, we suggest possible solutions. We fabricated silicon nanowire using a top-down and low cost micromachining method, and evaluate the sensing of molecules after transfer and surface modifications. Our newly designed method can be used to attach highly ordered nanowires to various substrates, to form a nanowire array device, which needs to follow a series of repetitive steps in conventional fabrication technology based on a vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) method. For evaluation, we demonstrated that our newly fabricated silicon nanowire arrays could detect pH changes as well as streptavidin-biotin binding events. As well as the initial proof-of-principle studies, C-reactive protein binding was measured: electrical signals were changed in a linear fashion with the concentration (1 fM to 1 nM) in PBS containing 1.37 mM of salts. Finally, to address the effects of Debye length, silicon nanowires coupled with antigen proteins underwent electrical signal changes as the salt concentration changed.

Keywords: silicon nanowire array, C-reactive protein, vapor-liquid-solid method

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