Biosensors & bioelectronics

Graphene wrapped Cu2O nanocubes: non-enzymatic electrochemical sensors for the detection of glucose and hydrogen peroxide with enhanced stability.

PMID 23500365


In this study, a sensor for the detection of glucose and hydrogen peroxide was developed on the basis of Cu2O nanocubes wrapped by graphene nanosheets (Cu2O/GNs) as electrocatalysts. Cubic Cu2O nanocrystals/graphene hybrid has been successfully fabricated by a chemical reduction method at low temperature. The morphologies of the synthesized materials were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and powder X-ray diffraction measurements (XRD). As a non-enzymatic amperometric sensor, the resulting Cu2O/graphene composite exhibited high sensitivity for the detection of glucose and H2O2. Moreover, the graphene coating was found to be able to effectively improve the electrochemical cycling stability of the fabricated sensor. With the Cu2O/GNs modified electrode, amperometric sensing of glucose was realized with a linear response over the concentration range from 0.3 to 3.3mM, a detection limit of 3.3 μM (S/N=3), high selectivity and short response time (<9s). Compared to unsupported Cu2O nanocubes, the graphene-wrapped Cu2O nanocubes exhibited higher catalytic activity for glucose oxidation with higher sensitivity and lower detection limit. The enzymeless sensor also exhibited good response toward H2O2, with the linear response ranging from 0.3 to 7.8mM at -0.4V and the detection limit of 20.8 μM. Moreover, because the surface is covered by graphene nanosheets, the as-synthesized Cu2O/GNs exhibited improved electrochemical stability. Such novel graphene nanosheets wrapped Cu2O nanocubes represent promising enzyme-free glucose and hydrogen peroxide sensors with high sensitivity and selectivity, improved stability and fast amperometric response.