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Electrochemical sensors as a versatile tool for the quantitative analysis of Vitamin B12

Santhy Antherjanam, Beena Saraswathyamma, Rajasree G. Krishnan, and Gopika M. Gopakumar

Department of Chemistry, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Kollam, India



Received: 14 November 2020  Accepted: 24 February 2021



Vitamin B12 (Vit B12) is one of the essential vitamins which play a prominent contribution in the functioning of neurological systems and the production of blood cells. Vit B12 is found in very low concentrations of the picomolar level in blood serum. The deficiency and surplus concentrations of Vit B12 in the blood may cause serious health disorders. The main sources of Vit B12 are meat, egg, dairy products, etc., and therefore, vegetarians are highly susceptible to Vit B12 deficiency. The insufficiency of Vit B12 in blood serum can be treated by giving proper Vit B12 supplements. Thus, selective, and sensitive point-of-care devices for the monitoring of Vit B12 from biological, pharmaceutical, and food samples are highly essential. A lot of analytical techniques are in practice for the quantification of Vit B12. Nevertheless, electrochemical methods possessed some advantages over other techniques because of their simplicity, cost-effectiveness, and fast response time. Vit B12 is an electroactive compound and is widely exploited in electroanalytical studies. There have been several reports for the electrochemical detection of Vit B12 using carbon-based electrodes, metal electrodes, paper electrodes, screen printed electrodes (SPE), bismuth film electrodes (BFE), indium tin-oxide (ITO) electrodes, dropping mercury electrodes (DME), etc., and to our knowledge, the picomolar level detection of Vit B12 was achieved only via ITO electrode. This review brings an exhaustive study of the electrochemical sensors and their analytical characteristics for Vit B12 for the first time by considering the advantages of the electrochemical techniques over other analytical methods. We have also compared the advantages and disadvantages of the existing electrochemical sensors for Vit B12. The review aims to explore the area of electrochemical sensing in the analysis of Vit B12 for further research by overcoming all challenges in the future.

Graphic abstract

Keywords: Vitamin B12; Sensors; Voltammetry; Electrodes; Electrochemical detection

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-021-01574-2


Chemical Papers 75 (7) 2981–2995 (2021)

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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