Surface activation of plasma-patterned carbon nanotube based DNA sensing electrodes
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We have studied the effect of treatment of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) for use in DNA-based biosensors with oxygen plasma. Well-patterned MWCNT electrodes were photolithographically fabricated on glass substrates. Pure oxygen was used for etching and functionalization of the MWCNT film in a lab-made plasma chamber. The resulting electrodes exhibited a dramatic change in the morphology of their surface, the chemical composition, and the electrochemical properties in terms of peak current and peak potential separation. The electrodes also showed increased DNA immobilization efficiency and much higher sensitivity in the detection of target DNA as compared to non-treated MWCNT electrodes. Plasma treatment was optimized and electrodes were characterized by atomic force microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, cyclic voltammetry, and differential pulse voltammetry.