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  Chemical Sensors 2012, 2: 12
  Research Article
Optimized smectite-polymer nanocomposite films for rapid ppb-level quantification of aflatoxins
  He Hua, Youjun Dengb, Jun Zoua  
a Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA
b Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA

  Aflatoxins are the most toxic mycotoxins in agricultural products. Their quantifications are still costly. The objective of this study is to optimize a low-cost smectite-polyacrylamide (PAM) nanocomposite films for the aflatoxin quantitative detection. The smectite was modified by Ba2+ cation exchange, which had been demonstrated to improve the aflatoxin adsorption capacity. The PAM aqueous solutions with the mass concentration ranging from 0.001% to 0.8% were used. The results showed that the nanocomposite synthesized from 0.005% concentration of PAM solution had the highest performance in adsorbing aflatoxins. The optimized smectite-PAM nanocomposite films could detect aflatoxin B1, B2, G1 and G2 (AFB1, AFB2, AFG1 and AFG2) at concentrations as low as 10 ppb in corn extraction solutions. Aflatoxin quantifications in mixture solutions (AFB1 and AFB2, AFG1 and AFG2, and AFB1 and AFG1) were conducted, and the recoveries of the third test ranged from 90.52% to 110.11% at low aflatoxin concentration (below 20 ppb).
  Aflatoxin; Smectite; Nanocomposite; Layer-by-layer assembly; Fluorometry  

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