DOI: 10.3390/mi15030373 ISSN: 2072-666X

Development of Fluorescent Sensors for Biorelevant Anions in Aqueous Media Using Positively Charged Quantum Dots

Hitalo J. B. Silva, Claudete F. Pereira, Goreti Pereira, Giovannia A. L. Pereira
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Control and Systems Engineering

Quantum dots (QDs) have captured the attention of the scientific community due to their unique optical and electronic properties, leading to extensive research for different applications. They have also been employed as sensors for ionic species owing to their sensing properties. Detecting anionic species in an aqueous medium is a challenge because the polar nature of water weakens the interactions between sensors and ions. The anions bicarbonate (HCO3−), carbonate (CO32−), sulfate (SO42−), and bisulfate (HSO4−) play a crucial role in various physiological, environmental, and industrial processes, influencing the regulation of biological fluids, ocean acidification, and corrosion processes. Therefore, it is necessary to develop approaches capable of detecting these anions with high sensitivity. This study utilized CdTe QDs stabilized with cysteamine (CdTe-CYA) as a fluorescent sensor for these anions. The QDs exhibited favorable optical properties and high photostability. The results revealed a gradual increase in the QDs’ emission intensity with successive anion additions, indicating the sensitivity of CdTe-CYA to the anions. The sensor also exhibited selectivity toward the target ions, with good limits of detection (LODs) and quantification (LOQs). Thus, CdTe-CYA QDs show potential as fluorescent sensors for monitoring the target anions in water sources.

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