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Overcoming Major Barriers to Developing Successful Sensors for Practical Applications Using Functional Nucleic Acids

Authors
  • Zhang, JingJing
  • Lan, Tian
  • Lu, Yi
Type
Published Article
Publisher
Annual Reviews
Publication Date
Jun 13, 2022
Volume
15
Pages
151–171
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1146/annurev-anchem-061020-104216
Source
Annual Reviews
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

For many years, numerous efforts have been focused on the development of sensitive, selective, and practical sensors for environmental monitoring, food safety, and medical diagnostic applications. However, the transition from innovative research to commercial success is relatively sparse. In this review, we identify four scientific barriers and one technical barrier to developing successful sensors for practical applications, including the lack of general methods to (a) generate receptors for a wide range of targets, (b) improve sensor selectivity to overcome interferences, (c) transduce the selective binding to different optical, electrochemical, and other signals, and (d) tune dynamic range to match thresholds of detection required for different targets; and the costly development of a new device. We then summarize solutions to overcome these barriers using sensors based on functional nucleic acids that include DNAzymes, aptamers, and aptazymes and how these sensors are coupled to widely available measurement devices to expand their capabilities and lower the barrier for their practical applications in the field and point-of-care settings.

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