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Harmful Microalgae Detection: Biosensors versus Some Conventional Methods
, Mahbubur Rahman,

In the last decade, there has been a steady stream of information on the methods and techniques available for detecting harmful algae species. The conventional approaches to identify harmful algal bloom (HAB), such as microscopy and molecular biological methods are mainly laboratory-based and require long assay times, skilled manpower, and pre-enrichment of samples involving various pre-experimental preparations. As an alternative, biosensors with a simple and rapid detection strategy could be an improvement over conventional methods for the detection of toxic algae species. Moreover, recent biosensors that involve the use of nanomaterials to detect HAB are showing further enhanced detection limits with a broader linear range. The improvement is attributed to nanomaterials’ high surface area to volume ratio, excellent biological compatibility with biomolecules, and being capable of amplifying the electrochemical signal. Hence, this review presents the potential usage of biosensors over conventional methods to detect HABs. The methods reported for the detection of harmful algae species, ranging from conventional detection methods to current biosensor approaches will be discussed, along with their respective advantages and drawbacks to indicate the future prospects of biosensor technology for HAB event management.

harmful algae; red tide; biosensor; HAB detection method; nanomaterial; conventional method
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