Microchimica Acta

, 186:637 | Cite as

A highly sensitive tetracycline sensor based on a combination of magnetic molecularly imprinted polymer nanoparticles and surface plasmon resonance detection

  • Wanru Gao
  • Pao Li
  • Si Qin
  • Zhao Huang
  • Yanan Cao
  • Xia LiuEmail author
Original Paper


A method is reported for in-situ detection of the antibiotic tetracycline (TC). It is based on a combination of extraction of TC by magnetic molecularly imprinted polymers nanoparticles (MMIPs NPs) and detection by surface plasmon resonance (SPR). The TC-captured MMIPs NPs were flowed over the surface of the SPR chip that was modified with mercaptoethylamine. The SPR signal undergoes a strong increase through the use of MMIPs NPs. It increases linearly in the 5.0–100 pg·mL−1 TC concentration range, and the detection limit is as low as 1.0 pg·mL−1 (at S/N = 3). This method shows selectivity to TC compared with structurally analogues. In order to demonstrate the power of the method, it was applied to the analysis of milk spiked with TC. These results were validated by comparing them to those of an enzyme-linked immunoassay. The average recovery is in the range of 95.7–104.6%.

Graphical abstract

Schematic representation of a surface plasmon resonance assay for the sensitive determination of tetracycline in milk using the magnetic molecularly imprinted polymers nanoparticles that can extract tetracycline and amplify the SPR signal.


Surface plasmon resonance Magnetic molecularly imprinted polymers nanoparticles Tetracycline Assay Specific recognition 



This work was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No.31671931; 31601551) and “1515” talent cultivation plan of Hunan Agricultural University.

Compliance with ethical standards

The author(s) declare that they have no competing interests. This article does not contain any studies with human oranimal subjects. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants include in the study.

Supplementary material

604_2019_3718_MOESM1_ESM.doc (3.7 mb)
ESM 1 (DOC 3784 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wanru Gao
    • 1
  • Pao Li
    • 1
  • Si Qin
    • 1
  • Zhao Huang
    • 1
  • Yanan Cao
    • 1
  • Xia Liu
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Hunan Province Key Laboratory of Food Science and Biotechnology, Hunan Co-Innovation Center for Utilization of Botanical Functional Ingredients, College of Food Science and TechnologyHunan Agricultural UniversityChangshaPeople’s Republic of China

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