• nanodevice;
  • liposome;
  • signal transduction system;
  • enzyme


This paper describes construction of a nanosensory device for amplified detection of biologically important amines as chemical signals. The device was inspired by a biological signal transduction system, and was fabricated on an artificial cell membrane through self-organization of the molecular components, such as a synthetic receptor and a natural enzyme. Selective recognition of biologically important amines was achieved by a synthetic receptor with a pyridoxal moiety, as evaluated by means of electronic absorption spectroscopy. The selectivity in detecting amines as chemical signals mainly depends on hydrophobicity of the amines. The event upon detecting the chemical signals was transmitted to an enzyme by a metal ion acting as a mediator species, and then the enzyme amplified the event by the catalytic reaction to obtain signal output. This paper is realization of a biomimetic signal transduction system using amines as chemical signals and may provide a useful guidepost for designing integrated nanosystems. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2010;105: 37–43. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.