Silicon nanowire field-effect transistors (SiNW-FETs) have recently drawn tremendous attention as a promising tool in biosensor design because of their ultrasensitivity, selectivity, and label-free and real-time detection capabilities. Here, we review the recently published literature that describes the device fabrication and biomedical applications of SiNW-FET sensors. For practical uses, SiNW-FETs can be delicately designed to be a reusable device via a reversible surface functionalization method. In the fields of biological research, SiNW-FETs are employed in the detections of proteins, DNA sequences, small molecules, cancer biomarkers, and viruses. The methods by which the SiNW-FET devices were integrated with these representative examples and advanced to virus infection diagnosis or early cancer detection will be discussed. In addition, the utilization of SiNW-FETs in recording the physiological responses from cells or tissues will also be reviewed. Finally, the novel design of a three dimensional (3D) nano-FET probe with kinked SiNWs for recording intracellular signals will be highlighted in this review.
- Biomarker detection
- DNA hybridization
- Field-effect transistor
- Peptide-small molecule interaction
- Protein-protein interaction
- Silicon nanowire
- Three-dimensional localized bioprobe