Gold nanoparticle-based biosensors for the assay of tumor marker proteins with clinical applications

Jiehua Ma1, 2, Xiaolu Hu1, Yaqin Tao1, Chao Li1, Xiaoxia Mao3, Genxi Li1, 3*

1State Key Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Collaborative Innovation Center of Chemistry for Life Sciences, Department of Biochemistry, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, P. R. China

2State Key Laboratory of Reproductive Medicine, Department of Reproductive Health, Nanjing Maternity and Child Health Care Hospital Affiliated with Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210004, P. R. China.

3Center for Molecular Recognition and Biosensing, School of Life Sciences, Shanghai University,  Shanghai 200444, P. R. China

Adv. Mater. Lett., 2017, 8 (12), pp 1125-1131

DOI: 10.5185/amlett.2017.1552

Publication Date (Web): Sep 08, 2017



The detection of tumor markers plays an important role in clinical diagnosis and evaluation of therapeutic effect. Early detection of tumor markers, which are usually proteins, can greatly facilitate effective treatment with different modalities and even increase cure rate of patients. Currently, nanoparticle-based methods for cancer diagnostics are becoming an increasingly relevant alternative to traditional techniques. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) are one of the most extensively studied nanomaterials due to their remarkable physical and chemical properties. With the recent advances in nanotechnology, AuNPs have offered new ways to detect tumor markers at low concentrations and to target cancer cells in very deep sites. The use of AuNPs may increase the sensitivity of a biosensor and generate higher accuracy and precision of the assays. So, AuNPs have greatly facilitated the development of nanomaterials-based technology for clinic diagnostics and therapy. In this review paper, we have summarized different kinds of AuNPs-based biosensors for the detection of tumor marker proteins with a particular focus on optical and electrochemical techniques, which may provide valuable perspective for the colleagues in the related communities.


Gold nanoparticles, biosensors, tumor marker protein, colorimetric analysis, electrochemical analysis.

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