Team NBB: Nanomaterial-Based Biosensors

Over the past several decades, there has been a growing need for the detection and quantification of chemical and biological species in different areas, including biomedical research, health care, agriculture, and environmental monitoring. There are several common requirements for the increasing number of biosensors in these areas: high sensitivity and selectivity, real-time and label-free detection, versatility and multianalyte detection, as well as simple integration into compact point-of-care devices.

Continuous miniaturization and recent advances in micro- and nanofabrication have led to the emergence of many nanomaterials as exciting new platforms for basic research and for applications in (opto-)electronic devices. In particular, semiconducting nanowires, carbon nanotubes, metal nanoparticles, and layered two-dimensional (2D) materials such as graphene and transition metal dichalcogenides (e.g. MoS2) have recently received much attention. These nanomaterials can more easily satisfy existing needs through improved performance, dense integration, cost reduction, or novel functionality.

Our team combines state-of-the-art nanomaterial research with biomedical know-how in order to develop a novel sensor technology platform for near-patient testing. Different nanomaterials are used to fabricate highly sensitive transducers that convert biochemical reactions into electronic or electrochemical signals. The sensor surface is chemically engineered to achieve selectivity for a wide range of analytes, including electrolytes, proteins, and blood gases. The sensor performance is validated using current gold standards such as surface plasmon resonance (SPR) or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Electronic biosensors based on nanomaterials have the ability to match the performance of the established techniques, with the advantages of low cost, simple integration, and rapid results.


  • Dr. Michael Hein
    Head of Advanced Systems Group, Roche Diagnostics International Ltd. (Industry Mentor)
  • Dr. Reiner Schlipfenbacher
    Head Technology Portfolio Management, Chief Technology Office, Roche Diagnostics GmbH (Industry Mentor)
  • Prof. Dr. Jana Zaumseil
    Chair of Applied Physical Chemistry, University of Heidelberg (Academic Mentor)


  1. Gutiérrez-Sanz Ó, Andoy NM, Filipiak MS, Haustein N, Tarasov A.
    Direct, Label-Free, and Rapid Transistor-Based Immunodetection in Whole Serum. ACS Sens. 2017
  2. Filipiak MS, Rother S, Andoy NM, Knudsen AC, Grimm S, Bachran C, Swee LK, Zaumseil J, Tarasov A.
    Highly sensitive, selective and label-free protein detection in physiological solutions using carbon nanotube transistors with nanobody receptors. Sens. Actuators B Chem. 2017

The research of this team is kindly sponsored by Roche.

Our Team Members

Dr. Alexey Tarasov

Group Leader

Design, development, and characterization of nanomaterials and biosensors

Previous work
  • 2013–2015: Postdoctoral Research Scholar with Prof. Eric Vogel, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA. Synthesis and characterization of 2D materials such as MoS2, WSe2, and graphene. Development of novel nanoelectronic devices based on 2D materials
  • 2013: Product Manager OEM Liquid Handling, Hamilton Company, Bonaduz, Switzerland
  • 2009–2012: PhD in Experimental Physics with Prof. Christian Schönenberger, University of Basel, Switzerland. Development of biochemical sensors based on silicon nanowires and graphene
  • 2003–2009: Diploma in Physics, Heinrich Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany
  • 2007: Study Abroad Semester, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
  • 2006: Intern, European R&D Internship Program, Procter & Gamble, Schwalbach, Germany
  • Cross-Discipline Manufacturing Innovation seed grant, Georgia Tech Manufacturing Institute, 2015
  • Advanced Postdoc Mobility Fellowship, Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), 2014
  • Early Postdoc Mobility Fellowship, SNSF, 2013
  • Scholarship of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation, 2005–2009

Dr. Oscar Gutierrez-Sanz

Postdoctoral Researcher

Electrochemical characterization of nanomaterial-based biosensors for multiple analyte detection.

Previous work
  • 2011–2015: PhD student with Dr. Antonio Lopez de Lacey at the Bioelectrocalysis Group in the Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry. Functional reconstitution of redox enzymes on gold electrodes mimicking their natural environment and surface biophysical characterization, Madrid, Spain
  • 2009–2011: Research associate in the laboratory of Prof. Conrado Moreno Vivian in the Biochemistry department of Cordoba University, Spain. Nitrogen metabolism in Pseudomonas pseudoalcaligenes

Marcin Szymon Filipiak

Research Associate

Microfabrication of nanobiosensors, surface modification and electrochemical measurements

Previous work
  • 2014–2015: Assistant at the Institute of Physical Chemistry of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland
  • 20082014: Master of Science in Biotechnology Engineering at Warsaw University of Technology, Warsaw, Poland

Natalie Haustein

Research Associate

Sensor surface functionalization for reliable measurements in serum; microfluidics

Previous work
  • 2008–2015: Engineering graduate in Bioprocess Engineering at Dresden University of Technology, Germany
  • 2011–2012: Research intern at the School of Biological Science and Center for Biomimetic Sensor Science at Nanyang Technological University Singapore

Amy Leson

Master‘s Thesis Student

Chip and liquid cell design

Previous work
  • Since 2016: Master of Sciences in Biological Engineering, Hamburg University of Applied Sciences, Hamburg, Germany
  • 2009-2014: Bachelor of Applied Sciences in Mechanical Engineering, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Michele Schroeter

Master‘s Thesis Student

Optimization of surface chemistry for measurements in serum

Previous work
  • Since 2016: Master of Sciences in Applied Life Sciences, University of Applied Sciences, Kaiserslautern, Germany
  • 2011-2016: Bachelor of Sciences in Biotechnology, University of Applied Sciences, Mannheim, Germany