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International Journal of Analytical Chemistry
Volume 2014, Article ID 536823, 8 pages
Research Article

Bioactive Paper Sensor Based on the Acetylcholinesterase for the Rapid Detection of Organophosphate and Carbamate Pesticides

Department of Pesticide Chemistry and Technology, Faculty of Agriculture, Alexandria University, El-Shatby, Alexandria 21545, Egypt

Received 2 September 2014; Accepted 27 October 2014; Published 18 November 2014

Academic Editor: Teizo Kitagawa

Copyright © 2014 Mohamed E. I. Badawy and Ahmed F. El-Aswad. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In many countries, people are becoming more concerned about pesticide residues which are present in or on food and feed products. For this reason, several methods have been developed to monitor the pesticide residue levels in food samples. In this study, a bioactive paper-based sensor was developed for detection of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors including organophosphate and carbamate pesticides. Based on the Ellman colorimetric assay, the assay strip is composed of a paper support ( cm), onto which a biopolymer chitosan gel immobilized in crosslinking by glutaraldehyde with AChE and 5,5′-dithiobis(2-nitrobenzoic) acid (DTNB) and uses acetylthiocholine iodide (ATChI) as an outside reagent. The assay protocol involves introducing the sample to sensing zone via dipping of a pesticide-containing solution. Following an incubation period, the paper is placed into ATChI solution to initiate enzyme catalyzed hydrolysis of the substrate, causing a yellow color change. The absence or decrease of the yellow color indicates the levels of the AChE inhibitors. The biosensor is able to detect organophosphate and carbamate pesticides with good detection limits ( mM and  mM) and rapid response times (~5 min). The results show that the paper-based biosensor is rapid, sensitive, inexpensive, portable, disposable, and easy-to-use.