Specific and label-free immunosensing of protein-protein interactions with silicon-based immunoFETs Academic Article uri icon


  • The importance of specific and label-free detection of proteins via antigen-antibody interactions for the development of point-of-care testing devices has greatly influenced the search for a more accessible, sensitive, low cost and robust sensors. The vision of silicon field-effect transistor (FET)-based sensors has been an attractive venue for addressing the challenge as it potentially offers a natural path to incorporate sensors with the existing mature Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) industry; this provides a stable and reliable technology, low cost for potential disposable devices, the potential for extreme minituarization, low electronic noise levels, etc. In the current review we focus on silicon-based immunological FET (ImmunoFET) for specific and label-free sensing of proteins through antigen-antibody interactions that can potentially be incorporated into the CMOS industry; hence, immunoFETs based on nano devices (nanowire, nanobelts, carbon nanotube, etc.) are not treated here. The first part of the review provides an overview of immunoFET principles of operation and challenges involved with the realization of such devices (i.e. e.g. Debye length, surface functionalization, noise, etc.). In the second part we provide an overview of the state-of-the-art silicon-based immunoFET structures and novelty, principles of operation and sensing performance reported to date.

publication date

  • May 1, 2019