A New Paradigm in Sweat Based Wearable Diagnostics Biosensors using Room Temperature Ionic Liquids (RTILs)



Successful commercialization of wearable diagnostic sensors necessitates stability in detection of analytes over prolonged and continuous exposure to sweat. Challenges are primarily in ensuring target disease specific small analytes (i.e. metabolites, proteins, etc.) stability in complex sweat buffer with varying pH levels and composition over time. We present a facile approach to address these challenges using RTILs with antibody functionalized sensors on nanoporous, flexible polymer membranes. Temporal studies were performed using both infrared spectroscopic, dynamic light scattering, and impedimetric spectroscopy to demonstrate stability in detection of analytes, Interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Cortisol, from human sweat in RTILs. Temporal stability in sensor performance was performed as follows: (a) detection of target analytes after 0, 24, 48, 96, and 168 hours post-antibody sensor functionalization; and (b) continuous detection of target analytes post-antibody sensor functionalization. Limit of detection of IL-6 in human sweat was 0.2 pg/mL for 0–24 hours and 2 pg/mL for 24–48 hours post-antibody sensor functionalization. Continuous detection of IL-6 over 0.2–200 pg/mL in human sweat was demonstrated for a period of 10 hours post-antibody sensor functionalization. Furthermore, combinatorial detection of IL-6 and Cortisol in human sweat was established with minimal cross-talk for 0–48 hours post-antibody sensor functionalization.


Includes supplementary material. This paper was recognized by the publisher as being one of the ten most read chemistry papers appearing in Scientific Reports in 2017.


Biomedical Engineering, Sweat, Wearable Electronic Devices, Hydrocortisone, Interleukin-6



CC BY 4.0 (Attribution), ©2017 The Authors.