Analytical Sciences

Abstract − Analytical Sciences, 18(11), 1215 (2002).

A Dip-and-Read Test Strip for the Determination of Mercury(II) Ion in Aqueous Samples Based on Urease Activity Inhibition
Guo-qing SHI and Guibin JIANG 
Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P. O. Box 2871, Beijing 100085, China
A sensitive dip-and-read test strip for the determination of mercury in aqueous samples based on the inhibition of urease reaction by the ion has been developed. The strip has a circular sensing zone that containing two layers: the top layer is a cellulose acetate membrane where urease is immobilized on it; the bottom layer is a pH indicator wafer that is impregnated with urea. The principle of the measurement is based on the disappearance of a yellow spot on the pH indicator wafer. The elapsing time until the disappearance of the spot which depends on the concentration of mercury(II) ion is measured with a stopwatch. Under the experimental conditions, as low as 0.2 ng/ml mercury can be observed with the detection range from 0.2 to 200 ng/ml in water. Organomercury compounds give essentially the same response as inorganic mercury. Heavy-metal ions such as Ag(I), Cu(II), Cd(II), Ni(II), Zn(II), and Pb(II) as well as other sample matrixes basically do not interfere with the mercury measurement.