Temperature-modulated solution-based synthesis of copper oxide nanostructures for glucose sensing

Yujiang Zhu, Carolina Vigil-Hernandez, Curran Kalha, Nathalie Kanchena Fernando, Steve Firth, Gemma-Louise Davies, Katarzyna Bialas, Despina Moschou, Anna Regoutz

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1 Citation (SciVal)


Glucose sensors are widely applied in society as an effective way to diagnose and control diabetes by monitoring the blood glucose level. With advantages in stability and efficiency in glucose detection, non-enzymatic glucose sensors are gradually replacing their enzymatic counterparts and copper(II) oxide (CuO) is a leading material. However, previous work extensively shows that even if the synthesis of CuO nanostructures is performed under nominally similar conditions, entirely different nanostructured products are obtained, resulting in varying physical and chemical properties of the final product, thereby leading to a differing performance in glucose detection. This work investigates the temperature dependence of a wet chemical precipitation synthesis for CuO nanostructures with the resulting samples showing selectivity for glucose in electrochemical tests. X-ray diffraction (XRD), Raman spectroscopy, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) demonstrate that all products are predominantly CuO, with some contribution from Cu(OH)2 and other surface species varying across synthesis temperatures. The most important change with increasing synthesis temperature is that the overall nanostructure size changes and the morphology shifts from nanoneedles to nanoparticles between 65 and 70 °C. This work helps to understand the critical relationship between synthesis temperature and final nanostructure and can explain the seemingly random nanostructures observed in the literature. The variations are key to controlling sensor performance and ultimately offering further development in copper oxide-based glucose sensors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3572-3582
Number of pages11
JournalMaterials Advances
Issue number16
Early online date17 Jul 2023
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

YZ, CVH and CK acknowledge the support from the Department of Chemistry, UCL. AR acknowledges the support from the Analytical Chemistry Trust Fund for her CAMS-UK Fellowship. NKF acknowledges support from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/L015277/1).


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