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Toward the Rapid Diagnosis of Sepsis: Detecting Interleukin-6 in Blood Plasma Using Functionalized Screen-Printed Electrodes with a Thermal Detection Methodology

Crapnell, RD and Jesadabundit, W and Garcia-Miranda Ferrari, Alejandro and Dempsey-Hibbert, NC and Peeters, M and Tridente, A and Chailapakul, O and Banks, CE (2021) Toward the Rapid Diagnosis of Sepsis: Detecting Interleukin-6 in Blood Plasma Using Functionalized Screen-Printed Electrodes with a Thermal Detection Methodology. Analytical Chemistry, 93 (14). pp. 5931-5938. ISSN 0003-2700

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Abstract

This paper reports the detection of the inflammatory and sepsis-related biomarker, interleukin-6 (IL-6), in human blood plasma using functionalized screen-printed electrodes (SPEs) in conjunction with a thermal detection methodology, termed heat-transfer method (HTM). SPEs are functionalized with antibodies specific for IL-6 through electrodeposition of a diazonium linking group and N'-ethylcarbodiimide hydrochloride (EDC) coupling, which was tracked through the use of cyclic voltammetry and Raman spectroscopy. The functionalized SPEs are mounted inside an additively manufactured flow cell and connected to the HTM device. We demonstrate the ability to detect IL-6 at clinically relevant concentrations in PBS buffer (pH = 7.4) with no significant interference from the similarly sized sepsis-related biomarker procalcitonin (PCT). The limit of detection (3s) of the system is calculated to correspond to 3.4 ± 0.2 pg mL-1 with a working range spanning the physiologically relevant concentration levels in both healthy individuals and patients with sepsis, indicating the sensitivity of the sensor is suitable for the application. Further experiments helped provide a proof-of-application through the detection of IL-6 in blood plasma with no significant interference observed from PCT or the constituents of the medium. Due to the selectivity, sensitivity, straightforward operation, and low cost of production, this sensor platform has the potential for use as a traffic light sensor for the multidetection of inflammatory biomarkers for the diagnosis of sepsis and other conditions in which the rapid testing of blood biomarkers has vital clinical application.

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