Bioluminescent whole cell optical fiber sensor to genotoxicants: System optimization

Boris Polyak, Efim Bassis, Alex Novodvorets, Shimshon Belkin, Robert S. Marks

    Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

    100 Scopus citations


    An Escherichia coli strain, genetically modified to emit a luminescent signal in the presence of genotoxic agents, was alginate-immobilized onto an exposed core of a fiber-optic. The performance of this whole-cell optical fiber sensor system was examined as a function of several parameters, including gel probe matrix volume, bacterial cell density, numerical aperture of the fiber core and working temperature. An optimal response to a model genotoxicant, mitomycin C, was achieved with six alginate/bacterial adlayers on a 1 cm exposed fiber-optic core. Total alginate volume per tip was about 100 μl, containing a bacterial suspension of around 1.5-3.0 × 107 cells. When the core diameter was etched down to 270 μm, photon detection efficiency significantly increased, although to a lesser extent than that expected from theoretical calculations. Further reduction in core diameter led to a reduced performance. Activity at 37°C was superior to that at 26°C. Under these optimized conditions, optrode response was mitomycin C dose-dependent for at least 6 h, with a lower detection threshold of 25 μg/l.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)18-26
    Number of pages9
    JournalSensors and Actuators, B: Chemical
    Issue number1-3
    StatePublished - 15 Apr 2001
    Event5th European Conference on Optical Chemical Sensors and Biosensors - Lyon, France
    Duration: 16 Apr 200019 Apr 2000


    • Bioluminescent bacteria
    • Genotoxicity
    • Optical fiber biosensors
    • Sodium alginate

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
    • Instrumentation
    • Condensed Matter Physics
    • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
    • Metals and Alloys
    • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
    • Materials Chemistry


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