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Aptamers
Smart molecules for biosensing clinical samples

MARCO MASCINI*, ILARIA PALCHETTI, SARA TOMBELLI
*Corresponding author
Università di Firenze Dipartimento di Chimica Ugo Schiff, Via della Lastruccia 3 Sesto Fiorentino, 50019, Italy

Abstract

Generally, in clinical analytical assays, when the detection systemrequires a bio-molecular recognition event like in biosensortechnology, antibody-based detection methodologies are stillconsidered the standard assays. These assays are well establishedand they have been demonstrated to reach the desired sensitivityand selectivity. However, the use of antibodies could encounter somelimitations. In order to circumvent some of these drawbacks, otherrecognition molecules have been explored as alternatives.In the recent years, attention has turned toward reagents, known asnucleic acid aptamers. Aptamers are made from short strands ofDNA or RNA that adopt specific three-dimensional conformationsallowing biorecognition of specific target proteins or small molecules.Interesting features of these molecule for clinical applications aresummarized in this review.


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