We report a technique for the detection of aerosolized viruses. Conventional field-effect-transistor (FET)-based techniques use solution-based processes, thus require antibody binding to the detection region of the FET prior to the supply of the analyte. With the method described here, virus-antibody-bound particles are delivered to the FET during detection; therefore, neither a pre-treatment antibody binding step on the FET channel nor washing process for virus-antibody-binding are necessary. Our method is based on the concept that virus-antibody-bound particles are larger than the virus or antibody alone, and thus have larger charge numbers following aerosol charging. When these particles are charged by negative ions and electro-aerodynamically deposited on a substrate, there exists a location on the substrate where neither lone virus nor antibody particles land, and where only virus-antibody-bound particles are deposited. If this location coincides with the channel of the FET, the resulting variation in the current can be used to indicate the existence of a virus. By aerosolizing a mixed solution of the virus and the antibody, only the virus-antibody-bound particles were transported to the swCNT-FET, and the electric current in the swCNT-FET decreased to 30% of that measured with no deposited particles.
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