Publication Details

Title :

Electrochemical immunosensors for the detection of survival motor neuron (SMN) protein using different carbon nanomaterials-modified electrodes


Biosensors and Bioelectronics

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ShimaaEissaa, NawalAlshehria, Anas M. AbdelRahmanab, MajedDasoukib, Khalid M. AbuSalahc, MohammedZourobab


a Department of Chemistry, Alfaisal University, Al Zahrawi Street, Al Maather, Al Takhassusi Road, Riyadh 11533, Saudi Arabia
b Department of Genetics, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, Zahrawi Street, Al Maather, Riyadh 11211, Saudi Arabia
c Department of Nanomedicine, King Abdullah International Medical Research Center/King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences King Abdulaziz Medical City, P.O. 3660, Riyadh 11481, Saudi Arabia

Year of Publication:




Spinal muscular atrophy is an untreatable potentially fatal hereditarydisorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in the survival motor neuron (SMN) 1 gene which encodes the SMN protein. Currently, definitive diagnosis relies on the demonstration of biallelic pathogenic variants in SMN1 gene. Therefore, there is an urgent unmet need to accurately quantify SMN protein levels for screening and therapeutic monitoring of symptomatic newborn and SMA patients, respectively. Here, we developed a voltammetric immunosensor for the sensitive detection of SMN protein based on covalently functionalized carbon nanofiber-modified screen printed electrodes. A comparative study of six different carbon nanomaterial-modified electrodes (carbon, graphene (G), graphene oxide (GO), single wall carbon nanotube (SWCNT), multi-wall carbon nanotube (MWCNT), and carbon nanofiber (CNF)) was performed. 4-carboxyphenyl layers were covalently grafted on the six electrodes by electroreduction of diazonium salt. Then, the terminal carboxylic moieties on the electrodes surfaces were utilized to immobilize the SMN antibody via EDC/NHS chemistry and to fabricate the immunosensors. The electrochemical characterization and analytical performance of the six immunosensors suggest that carbon nanofiber is a better electrode material for the SMN immunosensor. The voltammetric SMN carbon nanofiber-based immunosensor showed high sensitivity (detection limit of 0.75 pg/ml) and selectivity against other proteins such as cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) and dystrophin (DMD). We suggest that this novel biosensor is superior to other developed assays for SMN detection in terms of lower cost, higher sensitivity, simplicity and capability of high throughput screening.