Electrochemical DNA Biosensors: Protocols for Intercalator-Based Detection of Hybridization in Solution and at the Surface

  • Kagan Kerman
  • Mun'delanji Vestergaard
  • Eiichi Tamiya
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology™ book series (MIMB, volume 504)


An electrochemical DNA biosensor is a device that utilizes the inherent ability of two complementary strands of nucleic acids to form a double helix. The specificity of this reaction, namely hybridization, is used in the detection of target DNA sequences with a view toward developing point-of-care devices. Since the early 1990s, great progress has been made in this field, but there are still numerous challenges to overcome. This chapter describes the components of an electrochemical DNA biosensor for researchers new to the field, paying particular attention to intercalator-based DNA biosensors. We will use a well-defined electro-active DNA intercalator Hoechst 33258, as our running example. Two of the most classic DNA sensing methods: solution-based and surface-immobilized methods are discussed, along with guiding notes that would help identify and overcome possible problems in a typical electrochemical DNA biosensor experiment.


Biosensor Electrochemical DNA Intercalator Hybridization Hoechst 33258 Screen-printed electrode (SPE) Probe-modified electrode Self-assembled DNA monolayer 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kagan Kerman
    • 1
  • Mun'delanji Vestergaard
    • 2
  • Eiichi Tamiya
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of Western OntarioLondonCanada
  2. 2.Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST)School of Materials ScienceNomi CityJapan
  3. 3.Department of Applied Physics, Graduate School of EngineeringOsaka UniversitySuitaJapan

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