Detection of Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) DNA at femtomolar concentrations using a silica nanoparticle-enhanced microcantilever sensor

Byung Hak Cha, Sang Myung Lee, Jae Chan Park, Kyo Seon Hwang, Sang Kyung Kim, Yoon Sik Lee, Byeong Kwon Ju, Tae Song Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


We report Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) DNA detection using a silica nanoparticle-enhanced dynamic microcantilever biosensor. A 243-mer nucleotide of HBV DNA precore/core region was used as the target DNA. For this assay, the capture probe on the microcantilever surface and the detection probe conjugated with silica nanoparticles were designed specifically for the target DNA. For efficient detection of the HBV target DNA using silica nanoparticle-enhanced DNA assay, the size of silica nanoparticles and the dimension of microcantilever were optimized by directly binding the silica nanoparticles through DNA hybridization. In addition, the correlation between the applied nanoparticle concentrations and the resonant frequency shifts of the microcantilever was discussed clearly to validate the quantitative relationship between mass loading and resonant frequency shift. HBV target DNAs of 23.1 fM to 2.31 nM which were obtained from the PCR product were detected using a silica nanoparticle-enhanced microcantilever. The HBV target DNA of 243-mer was detected up to the picomolar (pM) level without nanoparticle enhancement and up to the femtomolar (fM) level using a nanoparticle-based signal amplification process. In the above two cases, the resonant frequency shifts were found to be linearly correlated with the concentrations of HBV target DNAs. We believe that this linearity originated mainly from an increase in mass that resulted from binding between the probe DNA and HBV PCR product, and between HBV PCR product and silica nanoparticles for the signal enhancement, even though there is another potential factor such as the spring constant change that may have influenced on the resonant frequency of the microcantilever.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-135
Number of pages6
JournalBiosensors and Bioelectronics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Sept 15

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are very grateful for the financial support from the Intelligent Microsystem Center sponsored by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy, as a component of the 21st century's Frontier R&D Projects (Grant MS-01-133-01), the National Core Research Center for Nanomedical Technology sponsored by Korea Science and Engineering Foundation (Grant R15-2004-024-00000-0), and KIST Institutional Program. B.H. Cha is now working for NANO Systems Institute in Seoul National University.


  • Dynamic microcantilever
  • Sandwich assay
  • Sensitivity enhancement
  • Silica nanoparticles

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biophysics
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Electrochemistry


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