Nanomaterial-based enzyme mimetics (nanozymes) is an emerging field of research that promises to produce alternatives to natural enzymes for a variety of applications. The search for the most cost-effective and efficient inorganic nanomaterials, such as metal oxides, cannot be won by pristine CuO. However, unlike CuO, the Zn-doped CuO (Zn-CuO) nanoparticles reported in this paper reveal superior peroxidase-like enzyme activity. This places Zn-CuO in a good position to participate in a range of activities aimed at developing diverse enzyme applications. The peroxidase-like activity was tested and confirmed against various chromogenic substrates in the presence of H2O2 and obeyed the Michaelis-Menten enzymatic pathway. The mechanism of enhanced enzymatic activity was proved by employing terephthalic acid as a fluorescence probe and by electron spin resonance. The nanozyme, when tested for the detection of glucose, showed a substantial enhancement in the detection selectivity. The limit of detection (LOD) was also decreased reaching a limit as low as 0.27 ppm. Such a low LOD has not been reported so far for the metal oxides without any surface modifications. Moreover, the nanozyme (Zn-CuO) was utilized to detect the three antioxidants tannic acid, tartaric acid, and ascorbic acid and the relative strength of their antioxidant capacity was compared.
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© 2016 American Chemical Society.
- glucose detection
- peroxidase mimic