A facile synthetic route for TiO2-CdSe heterostructures was proposed based on dentate binding of TiO2 to carboxyl. Carboxyl functionalized CdSe quantum dots (CF-CdSe QDs) were successfully bonded onto TiO2 nanoparticles (NPs), which could significantly improve the photoelectrochemical (PEC) properties of TiO2 NPs. This is ascribed to the fact that CdSe QDs with a narrow band gap could be stimulated under visible light irradiation, and the energy levels of TiO2 NPs and CF-CdSe QDs are aligned with an electrolyte solution. High resolution transmission electron microscopy images revealed the heterostructures of the TiO2-CdSe composites. Ultraviolet visible spectroscopy, photoluminescence emission spectroscopy and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy analysis exhibited that the prepared TiO2-CdSe heterostructures have improved light absorption, charge separation efficiency and electron transfer ability in the visible light region. TiO2-CdSe heterostructures were used as versatile labels for fabrication of PEC and electrochemical immunosensors, and human immune globulin G (HIgG) was used as a model analyte. The immunosensor showed high sensitivity, a low detection limit and a wide linear range, which could be applied in practical serum sample analysis. The constructed TiO2-CdSe heterostructures would have potential applications in photocatalysis, aptasensors, cytosensors and other areas of nanotechnology.
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