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Evaluation of carbon nanotube based copper nanoparticle composite for the efficient detection of agroviruses

Muhammad Ali Tahir, Sadia Z. Bajwa, Shahid Mansoor, Rob W. Briddon, Waheed S. Khan, Brian E. Scheffler, Imran Amin
Journal of hazardous materials 2018 v.346 pp. 27-35
DNA, Geminiviridae, Gossypium, biosensors, carbon nanotubes, copper nanoparticles, cotton, detection limit, electrochemistry, hybridization, leaves, methylene blue, monitoring, nanocomposites, sap, viruses, Africa, Asia
We report a biosensor that combines the construction of a three-dimensional nanocomposite with electrochemical methods for the detection of viruses in plants. This is the first report, where carbon nanotubes are used as a conductive frame to anchor highly electrolytic agglomerates of copper nanoparticles to detect agroviruses. Morphological analysis of nanocomposite revealed the presence of carbon nanotubes having a diameter of 50–100nm with copper nanoparticles of 20–100nm, attached in the form of bunches. This material was applied to assess the infection caused by geminiviruses which are a major threat to the cotton plants in Asian and African countries. The hybridization events were studied by monitoring differential pulse voltammetry signals using methylene blue as a redox indicator. In the presence of target DNA, sensor signals decreased from 7×10⁻⁴ to 1×10⁻⁴Ampere. The probe exhibited 97.14% selectivity and the detection limit was found to be 0.01ngμL⁻¹. The developed biosensor is stable for at least four weeks, losing only 4.3% of the initial signal value. This sensor was able to detect the presence of viruses in sap extracted from cotton leaves, thus providing a promising platform to detect a range of other crops-infecting viruses.