A MIP-based biomimetic sensor for the impedimetric detection of histamine in different pH environments

E. Bongaers, J. Alenus, F. Horemans, A. Weustenraed, L. Lutsen, D. Vanderzande, T. J. Cleij, F. J. Troost, R. -J. Brummer, P. Wagner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The development of novel biosensors is a rapidly growing field. Substituting the biological receptor layer from the biosensor with a synthetic receptor opens the door for the development of biomimetic sensors that are chemically and physically inert, as opposed to the sensors containing biological recognition elements. Using molecularly imprinted polymers (MIPs) the specificity and affinity of biological receptors can be mimicked. In addition, a MIP-based sensor can measure in harsh environments. Histamine occurs in harsh environments in food and bodily fluids and is chosen as the target molecule for impedimetric detection: When 10 nM histamine is present in pH neutral environments, the impedance increases 45% with respect to the impedance of the sensor without histamine. Specificity is tested with respect to histidine. The influence of the pH on the performance of the sensor is tested. In a pH range of pH 5-12 the MIPs are stable, although they exhibit a varying degree of protonation. The same holds true for the target molecule of which the protonation also varies with the pH of the solution. It is shown that the pH dependent degree of protonation of both the MIP and the histamine has a large impact on the binding of histamine to the nanocavity in the MIP. Hence, the detection of histamine by a MIP-based sensor is affected by the PH of the solution.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837-843
JournalPhysica Status Solidi A-applications and Materials Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010


  • biosensor
  • electrochemical sensors
  • biomaterials


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