Nanoparticles for bioanalysis

Sharron G. Penn, Lin He, Michael J. Natan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

507 Scopus citations


This review covers the emerging field of nanobiotechnology, in which nanoparticles are applied to the analysis of biomolecules. Nanoparticles can be used in a variety of bioanalytical formats, and this review discusses four classes of use. First, nanoparticles as quantitation tags, such as the optical detection of quantum dots and the electrochemical detection of metallic nanoparticles. Second, encoded nanoparticles as substrates for multiplexed bioassays, such as striped metallic nanoparticles. Third, nanoparticles that leverage signal transduction, for example in colloidal gold-based aggregation assays. Fourth, functional nanoparticles that exploit specific physical or chemical properties of nanoparticles to carry out novel functions, such as the catalysis of a biological reaction. In addition, the review discusses the next generation of nanoparticles that will be utilized in the life sciences, such as nanodots and carbon nanotubes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)609-615
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Opinion in Chemical Biology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2003
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge the Advanced Technology Program of the National Institute of Standards and Technology for funding (grant # 70NANB1H3028).


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