Cytokines are soluble proteins secreted by immune cells that act as molecular messengers relaying instructions and mediating various functions performed by the cellular counterparts of the immune system, by means of a synchronized cascade of signaling pathways. Aberrant expression of cytokines can be indicative of anomalous behavior of the immunoregulatory system, as seen in various illnesses and conditions, such as cancer, autoimmunity, neurodegeneration and other physiological disorders. Cancer and autoimmune diseases are particularly adept at developing mechanisms to escape and modulate the immune system checkpoints, reflected by an altered cytokine profile. Cytokine profiling can provide valuable information for diagnosing such diseases and monitoring their progression, as well as assessing the efficacy of immunotherapeutic regiments. Toward this goal, there has been immense interest in the development of ultrasensitive quantitative detection techniques for cytokines, which involves technologies from various scientific disciplines, such as immunology, electrochemistry, photometry, nanotechnology and electronics. This review focusses on one aspect of this collective effort: electrochemical biosensors. Among the various types of biosensors available, electrochemical biosensors are one of the most reliable, user-friendly, easy to manufacture, cost-effective and versatile technologies that can yield results within a short period of time, making it extremely promising for routine clinical testing.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Biochemistry