Frequency dependent and surface characterization of DNA immobilization and hybridization

Tin Christopher Hang, Anthony Guiseppi-Elie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


The hybridization of oligomeric DNA was investigated using the frequency dependent techniques of quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). Synthetic 5′-amine-terminated single stranded oligonucleotides (ssDNA) were immobilized on the surface of the oxidized platinum driving electrodes of AT-cut quartz QCM crystals using 3-glycidoxypropyl-trimethoxysilane. Similar ssDNA coupling was accomplished on the exposed glass surface between the metallic digits of microlithographically fabricated interdigitated microsensor electrodes (IMEs). Confirmation of this covalent coupling surface chemistry was achieved using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy-attenuated total reflectance (FTIR-ATR). Substantial changes in resonant frequency values (0.012% decrease) and electrochemical impedance values (both real and imaginary components) (35.4 and 42.1% increase in impedance magnitude at 1.0 Hz in buffer and deionized water, respectively) were observed resulting from hybridization of the attached ssDNA upon exposure to its complement under appropriate hybridization conditions. Non-complementary (random) oligomer sequence demonstrated a modest change in resonant frequency and a non-detectable change in impedance. Microarray glass slide surfaces modified with 3-glycidoxypropyltrimethoxysilane (GPS), shown to be advantageous in the design and use of microarrays of amine-terminated ssDNA, is confirmed to arise from direct covalent coupling of the DNA to the surface with little non-specific adsorption. The possibility to detect the binding state of DNA in the vicinity of an electrode, without a direct connection between the measurement electrode and the DNA is hereby reported. The potential for development of label-free, low-density DNA microarrays is demonstrated and is being pursued.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1537-1548
Number of pages12
JournalBiosensors and Bioelectronics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 15 2004


  • DNA hybridization
  • DNA microarrays
  • Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy
  • Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy-attenuated total reflectance
  • Oligonucleotides
  • Quartz crystal microbalance
  • Silanes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Electrochemistry


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