Nanomaterials for Health & Environmental Smart Sensors (Nano4Sens)

Research Group

Chiara Zanardi, Full Professor
Maria Antonietta Baldo, Associate Professor
Angela Maria Stortini, Researcher
Alessandro Silvestri, Researcher
Sabrina Fabris, Technical Staff 
Lorena Gobbo, Technical Staff 
Linda Trevisan, Technical Staff 
Giulia Moro, Subject expert
Najmeh Karimian, Research Grant Holder

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Department of Environmental, Informatic and Statistical Sciences, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice
University of Modena and Reggio Emilia
Institute for the Organic Synthesis and Photosynthesis (CNR)
Università di Roma Tor Vergata
Università di Parma
University of Burgos, Spain
University of Cadiz, Spain
CIC biomaGUNE, San Sebastian, Spain
Centro De Investigación y Desarrollo Tecnológico En Electroquímica, S.C., Mexico

Research topics

Electrochemical sensors for the monitoring of emerging contaminants in water

Sensors are developed for the determination of organic pollutants present in tap and wastewater, particularly consisting in phytosanitary products and disinfection by-products. Sensors for these species exploit nanomaterials (metal nanoparticles and graphene) eventually associated with enzymes. Detection of PFAS exploit the use of molecular-printed polymers: biomimetic materials that selectively recognize the analyte for the presence of sites of specific dimension and shape.

Sensors for the detection of biomarkers in biological fluids

The research group develops electrochemical sensors for the non-invasive analysis of various biomarkers in biological fluids, such as urine, saliva and sweat. Multi-sensor platforms are developed for the determination of electrolytes and organic molecules in sweat and to define the effects of prolonged exposure to organic pollutants. The detection exploits innovative, environmental sustainable and low-cost sensor platforms, obtained using polymers, paper and fabric as substrates.

Miniaturized sensors based on micro- and nano-electrodes for the analysis of complex matrices

Electrode systems characterized by single and arrays of micro- and nano-electrodes are developed to conduct “in situ” diagnostic investigations, and in small volume samples, on the electrochemical processes of electroactive species present in real complex matrices. The attention is mainly focused on applications in the environmental, clinical and food fields for the determination of trace-level concentrations of natural components, metal contaminants, or biological indicators of the studied matrices.

Smart inks for electrochemical sensors

With the advent of flexible electronics, the old fashioned and conventional solid-state technology will be replaced by conductive inks combined with low-cost printing techniques. 2D-nanomaterials are ideal candidates to produce conductive inks, due to their excellent conductivity. The possibility to chemically modify these materials allows to obtain inks responsive to external stimuli. Combined with classical printing techniques, such as screen and inkjet-printing these inks can be used to produce electroanalytical platforms.

Last update: 19/06/2024