Dual sensing reporter system of assembled gold nanoparticles toward the sequential colorimetric detection of adenosine and Cr(III)

Ruiqi Zhu, Jinping Song*, Ying Zhou, Peng Lei, Zhongping Li, Hung Wing LI, Shaomin Shuang, Chuan Dong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


A facile and sensitive sequential colorimetric detection strategy for adenosine and Cr3+ has been presented by using the aptamer and 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid assembled gold nanoparticles. The thiolated DNA and 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid was simultaneously assembled to the surface of gold nanoparticles in one step by gold-sulfur interaction. Adenosine aptamer was linked to functionalized gold nanaoparticles based on the strict complementary nature of the DNA base pairs. Conformational change of aptamer will be induced due to its specific binding with targets. As a result, this aptamer tethered aggregated nanoparticles underwent fast disassembly into dispersed nanoparticles upon binding of adenosine, and this distance change between particles induced a distinct solution color changing from blue to red. The dispersed particles were sensitive to Cr3+ due to the chelation effect between the carboxyl group of 11-mercaptoundecanoic acid and metal ions, and further occurred obvious aggregation accompanying with a color change from red to blue. Depended on this principle, a sensitive and selective sequential colorimetric sensor for detection of adenosine and Cr3+ was developed. The proposed colorimetric sensor exhibited wide linear ranges and low detection limits towards the detection of adenosine and Cr3+. Regarding adenosine, linear range was 1 × 10−7 ∼ 1 × 10−4 M with low detection limit of 1.8 × 10−8 M, and the naked eye detection limit was estimated as 20 μM. With regard to Cr3+, good linear relationship was ranged from 1 × 10−10 to 1 × 10−6 M with low detection limit of 1.7 × 10−11 M,and the naked eye detection limit was as low as 0.1 nM. Meanwhile, bifunctional recognition was successfully used for practical human urine samples with good recoveries from 89.0% to 112.6% for adenosine and 90.2%–113.4% for Cr3+. It also highlights the potential applications of other aptamers and ligands in cascade analysis of other analytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)294-303
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Analytical Chemistry

User-Defined Keywords

  • Adenosine
  • Cr(III)
  • Gold nanoparticles
  • Sequential detection


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