Recent biosensing developments in environmental security


Environmental security is one of the fundamental requirements of our well being. However, it still remains a major global challenge. Therefore, in addition to reducing and/or eliminating the amounts of toxic discharges into the environment, there is need to develop techniques that can detect and monitor these environmental pollutants in a sensitive and selective manner to enable effective remediation. Because of their integrated nature, biosensors are ideal for environmental monitoring and detection as they can be portable and provide selective and sensitive rapid responses in real time. In this review we discuss the main concepts behind the development of biosensors that have most relevant applications in the field of environmental monitoring and detection. We also review and document recent trends and challenges in biosensor research and development particularly in the detection of species of environmental significance such as organophosphate nerve agents, heavy metals, organic contaminants, pathogenic microorganisms and their toxins. Special focus will be given to the trends that have the most promising applications in environmental security. We conclude by highlighting the directions towards which future biosensors research in environmental security sector might proceed.


Chemistry and Biochemistry

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Journal of Environmental Monitoring