Enric Calucho



MMRES student at ICN2
Class 2017-2018

After MMRES:

PhD at ICN2

Encapsulation of doped graphene quantum dots into liposomes for signal amplification in biosensing


Improving the sensitivity and limit of detection is one the current goals in the development of point-of-care (PoC) biosensors. Herein we describe the design and development of a biosensing label based on strongly photoluminescent and stable nitrogen- and sulphurdoped graphene quantum dots encapsulated into liposomes (GQD@LPs). Since liposomes can be conjugated to antibodies, the detection of a wide variety of analytes becomes possible. The signal amplification expected from this label is explained by the amount of N,S-GQDs associated to an analyte recognised by antibodies, which would not be possible without the storage capabilities of liposomes. N,S-GQDs have proven to be more photoluminescent and stable than non-doped GQDs. Encapsulation of N,S-GQDs into liposomes has been accomplised by the thin-film hydration method, while an EDC/NHS strategy via activation of free carboxylic groups in liposomes has been followed for the conjugation to antibodies. Although the conjugation is still under development, the achieved know-how on GQDs and liposomes pave the way for the materialisation of this biosensing label. Future steps include testing the label in a paper-based platform like lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) and the implementation of smartphone readout of results.

Major project supervisor

Arben Merkoçi

Minor project supervisor

Belén Ballesteros