Biosensors combine the unique properties of biological systems to
selectively recognize and convert molecules with the benefits of
physicochemical sensor technology, such as high sensitivity,
simplicity of operation and mass production, and modern
electronics. Consequently, their development is closely related to
progress in two branches of high technology - biotechnology and
This book not only presents the state-of-the-art of biosensor
research and development to the specialist, but also introduces the
layman to the fundamentals of the subject. The relevant features of
physicochemical transducer elements as well as biochemical
recognition molecules (enzymes, antibodies, receptors) are
outlined. Biochemical and biotechnological aspects of biomolecule
immobilization and the interplay of biochemical reactions and mass
transfer processes are comprehensively treated with regard to their
impact on successful sensor design. Examples of immobilization
methods are described in detail. The employment of coupled enzyme
reactions, higher integrated biocatalytic systems (cell organelles,
microbes, tissue sections) and immunocomponents in biosensors is
covered extensively. Optical, thermometric, piezoelectric and
particularly electrochemical biosensors for more than 100 analytes
are presented, including immunosensors. The relative merits and
limits of biosensors are discussed using several examples of their
application in clinical chemistry, bioprocess control and
environmental monitoring. Finally, the application of biosensors in
medicine, biotechnology, food industry and environmental control is
discussed, including commercialization and problems to be addressed
in future research.
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