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Content archived on 2024-04-19

A portable amperometric biosensor system for the monitoring of heavy metal ions, bacteria, pesticides in waste waters


The project aims to study, to design and to set-up a high sensitivity biosensor system for sampling and monitoring of waste waters. This system will be tested in the field to measure heavy metal ions, pesticides and bacteria at concentrations relevant to existing and planned legislation.

The development of a portable, low cost and high sensitivity biosensor system for the detection of heavy metal ions, pesticides and bacteria demands substantial R&D efforts on the following topics:

1. Testing of macrocyclinc complexing agents, providing suitable electrochemistry, and specific for Hg, Pb, Co, Cd, Cu, Cr, Zn, Sn ions.

2. Study of redox behavior of macrocyclic complexing agents before and upon metal ion complexation.

3. Study of a high gain enzyme amplification system which generates electroactive molecules that can be detected voltammetrically on electrodes, which are part of the amplification system.

4. Purification and characterization of antibodies for various pesticides and for Hg, Sn, Pb and their possible organometallic derivatives, in order to obtain immunosensors with suitable kinetic and binding constants.

5. Set-up of microcolumns containing immobilized antibodies for the recognition of the pesticide o interest.

6. Modification and testing of electroactive probes of membrane potential.

7. Development of an amperometric system for determination of bacteria utilizing electroactive membranes potential probes. The change of the redox potential accompanying the induced polarization will be utilized as a quantitative method for microbial selection.

8. Development of a low power, computer controlled system, for the water flow, the calibration of the apparatus and the processing and storage of data.

9. Implementation of a software for pattern recognition of metal ion binding.

10. Validation of amperometric measurements of pesticides and metal ions in real samples by various analytical techniques (GC-NPD, GC-AED, ICP-MS, LC-MS, etc.).

Call for proposal

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Viale G. Colombo 3
35121 PADOVA

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