Analytica chimica acta

Label-free quantification of Tacrolimus in biological samples by atomic force microscopy.

PMID 26073814


In the present paper we describe an atomic force microscopy (AFM)-based method for the quantitative analysis of FK506 (Tacrolimus) in whole blood (WB) samples. Current reference methods used to quantify this immunosuppressive drug are based on mass spectrometry. In addition, an immunoenzymatic assay (ELISA) has been developed and is widely used in clinic, even though it shows a small but consistent overestimation of the actual drug concentration when compared with the mass spectrometry method. The AFM biosensor presented herein utilises the endogen drug receptor, FKBP12, to quantify Tacrolimus levels. The biosensor was first assayed to detect the free drug in solution, and subsequently used for the detection of Tacrolimus in blood samples. The sensor was suitable to generate a dose-response curve in the full range of clinical drug monitoring. A comparison with the clinically tested ELISA assay is also reported.