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Aptamer-based lateral flow assays

Institut für Technische Chemie, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Hannover, Germany

Lateral flow assays as point-of-care devices have attracted interest due to their advantages including low costs, easy operation by non-specialized users and low analyte volumes needed. These advantages make lateral flow assays to superior tools for the on-site detection of analytes with qualitative or semi-quantitative results within minutes. Aptamers are single-stranded nucleic acid oligomers with distinct conformational shapes that can bind their corresponding targets via molecular recognition. Due to their specific properties like an efficient chemical synthesis, a longer shelf life and easy introduction of modifications aptamers seem to be ideal biological recognition elements. Moreover, they enable the design of intelligent detection schemes not available with antibodies. This review focuses on lateral flow assays utilizing aptamers as an element for molecular recognition. In the first part of the review, a brief overview on lateral flow assays and aptamers, regarding their generation and properties, will be given. In the second part, a review of recently published literature on this topic will demonstrate the broad spectrum of possible applications and analytes, detectable with aptamer-based lateral flow assays.
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