Rapid, Multianalyte Detection of Opioids in Wastewater

By monitoring opioid metabolites, wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) could be an excellent tool for real-time information on the consumption of illicit drugs. A key limitation of WBE is the reliance on costly laboratory-based techniques that require substantial infrastructure and trained personnel, resulting in long turnaround times. Here, we present an aptamer-based graphene field-effect transistor (AptG-FET) platform for the simultaneous detection of three different opioid metabolites. This platform provides a reliable, rapid, and inexpensive method for quantitative analysis of opioid metabolites in wastewater. The platform delivers a limit of detection 2−3 orders of magnitude lower than previous reports but in line with the concentration range (pg/mL to ng/mL) of these opioid metabolites present in real samples. To enable multianalyte detection, we developed a facile, reproducible, and high-yield fabrication process producing 20 G-FETs with integrated side gate platinum (Pt) electrodes on a single chip. Our devices achieved the selective multianalyte detection of three different metabolites: noroxycodone (NX), 2-ethylidene-1,5-dimethyl-3,3-diphenylpyrrolidine (EDDP), and norfentanyl (NF) in wastewater diluted 20x in buffer.

ACS Nano 2022