Metal ion sensors based on DNAzymes and related DNA molecules

Xiao Bing Zhang, Rong Mei Kong, Yi Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Metal ion sensors are an important yet challenging field in analytical chemistry. Despite much effort, only a limited number of metal ion sensors are available for practical use because sensor design is often a trial-and-error-dependent process. DNAzyme-based sensors, in contrast, can be developed through a systematic selection that is generalizable for a wide range of metal ions. Here, we summarize recent progress in the design of DNAzyme-based fluorescent, colorimetric, and electrochemical sensors for metal ions, such as Pb2+, Cu2+, Hg2+, and UO22+. In addition, we also describe metal ion sensors based on related DNA molecules, including T-T or C-C mismatches and G-quadruplexes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)105-128
Number of pages24
JournalAnnual Review of Analytical Chemistry
StatePublished - Jul 19 2011


  • amplification
  • biosensors
  • colorimetry
  • electrochemistry
  • fluorescence
  • gold nanoparticles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Medicine(all)

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