Bulletin of Chinese Academy of Sciences (Chinese Version)


smell and taste sensing; biosensors; bioinspired sensing; brain-computer interaction; intelligent sensing

Document Type



The mammalian olfactory and gustatory system is recognized as the most effective chemosensing systems due to their extraordinary ability in odor and tastant detection. Detection of odors has been applied to many real applications, such as quality control of food products, safety and security, environmental monitoring, medical diagnosis and so on. Here, we focus on the principle, basic composition, employed technology and application of electronic nose/electronic tongue, molecule and cell based olfactory/gustatory biosensors. We also introduce the research progress of a novel system which we called ' in vivo bioelectronic nose and tongue'. Finally, the further trend in this area is forecasted.

First page


Last Page





Bulletin of Chinese Academy of Sciences


Ache B W, Young J M. Olfaction:diverse species, conserved principles. Neuron, 2005, 48(3):417-430.

Chandrashekar J, Hoon M A, Ryba N J P, et al. The receptors and cells for mammalian taste. Nature, 2006, 444(7117):288-294.

Kay L M, Stopfer M. Information processing in the olfactory systems of insects and vertebrates. Seminars in cell & Developmental Biology, 2006, 17(4):433-442.

DÅgostino A E, Di Lorenzo P M. Information processing in the Gustatory System. In:Springer Handbook of Bio-/Neuroinformatics. Berlin-Heidelberg:Springer, 2014:783-796.

Liu Q, Wu C, Cai H, et al. Cell-based biosensors and their application in biomedicine. Chemical Reviews, 2014, 114(12):6423-6461.

Son M, Lee J Y, Ko H J, et al. Bioelectronic nose:An emerging tool for odor standardization. Trends in Biotechnology, 2017, 35(4):301.

Ha D, Sun Q, Su K, et al. Recent achievements in electronic tongue and bioelectronic tongue as taste sensors. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2015, 207:1136-1146.

Zhuang L, Guo T, Cao D, et al. Detection and classification of natural odors with an in vivo bioelectronic nose. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2015, 67:694-699.

Qin Z, Zhang B, Hu L, et al. A novel bioelectronic tongue in vivo for highly sensitive bitterness detection with brain-machine interface. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2016, 78:374-380.

秦臻, 董琪, 胡靓.仿生嗅觉与味觉传感技术及其应用的研究进展.中国生物医学工程学报, 2014, 33(5):609-619.

Liu Q, Ye W, Xiao L, et al. Extracellular potentials recording in intact olfactory epithelium by microelectrode array for a bioelectronic nose. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2010, 25(10):2212-2217.

Zhang F, Zhang Q, Zhang D, et al. Biosensor analysis of natural and artificial sweeteners in intact taste epithelium. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2014, 54:385-392.

Liu Q, Cai H, Xu Y, et al. Olfactory cell-based biosensor:a first step towards a neurochip of bioelectronic nose. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2006, 22(2):318-322.

Wu C, Chen P, Yu H, et al. A novel biomimetic olfactorybased biosensor for single olfactory sensory neuron monitoring. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2009, 24(5):1498-1502.

Zhang W, Li Y, Liu Q, et al. A novel experimental research based on taste cell chips for taste transduction mechanism. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2008, 131(1):24-28.

Hu L, Zou L, Qin Z, et al. A novel label-free bioengineered cellbased biosensor for salicin detection. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2017, 238:1151-1158.

Hu L, Xu J, Qin Z, et al. Detection of bitterness in vitro by a novel male mouse germ cell-based biosensor. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2016, 223:461-469.

Wu T Z. A piezoelectric biosensor as an olfactory receptor for odour detection:electronic nose. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 1999, 14(1):9-18.

Wu C, Du L, Wang D, et al. A biomimetic olfactory-based biosensor with high efficiency immobilization of molecular detectors. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2012, 31(1):44-48.

Lu Y, Li H, Zhuang S, et al. Olfactory biosensor using odorantbinding proteins from honeybee:Ligands of floral odors and pheromones detection by electrochemical impedance. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2014, 193(3):420-427.

Song H S, Jin H J, Ahn S R, et al. Bioelectronic tongue using heterodimeric human taste receptor for the discrimination of sweeteners with human-like performance. ACS Nano, 2014, 8(10):9781-9789.

Wu C, Du L, Zou L, et al. A biomimetic bitter receptor-based biosensor with high efficiency immobilization and purification using self-assembled aptamers. Analyst, 2013, 138(20):5989-5994.

Strauch M, Lüdke A, Münch D, et al. More than apples and oranges-detecting cancer with a fruit fly's antenna. Scientific reports, 2014, 4(3):3576.

Nowotny T, De Bruyne M, Berna A Z, et al. Drosophila olfactory receptors as classifiers for volatiles from disparate real world applications. Bioinspiration & Biomimetics, 2014, 9(4):046007.

庄柳静, 周俊, 董琪, 等.利用动物嗅觉诊断癌症技术的研究进展.科学通报, 2013, 58(15):1369-1378.

Zhuang L, Hu N, Dong Q, et al. A high sensitive in vivo biosensing detection for odors by multiunit in rat olfactory bulb. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2013, 186(9):308-314.

Qin Z, Zhang B, Gao K, et al. A whole animal-based biosensor for fast detection of bitter compounds using extracellular potentials in rat gustatory cortex. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2017, 239:746-753.

Röck F, Barsan N, Weimar U. Electronic nose:current status and future trends. Chemical reviews, 2008, 108(2):705-725.

Lim J H, Park J, Ahn J H, et al. A peptide receptor-based bioelectronic nose for the real-time determination of seafood quality. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2013, 39(1):244-249.

Smith R G, D'Souza N, Nicklin S. A review of biosensors and biologically-inspired systems for explosives detection. Analyst, 2008, 133(5):571-584.

Pauling L, Robinson A B, Teranishi R, et al. Quantitative analysis of urine vapor and breath by gas-liquid partition chromatography. PNAS, 1971, 68(10):2374-2376.

Gordon S M, Szidon J P, Krotoszynski B K, et al. Volatile organic compounds in exhaled air from patients with lung cancer. Clinical Chemistry, 1985, 31(8):1278-1282.

Park J, Lim J H, Jin H J, et al. A bioelectronic sensor based on canine olfactory nanovesicle-carbon nanotube hybrid structures for the fast assessment of food quality. Analyst, 2012, 137(14):3249-3254.

Sankaran S, Panigrahi S, Mallik S. Odorant binding protein based biomimetic sensors for detection of alcohols associated with Salmonella contamination in packaged beef. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2011, 26(7):3103-3109.

Song H S, Kwon O S, Lee S H, et al. Human taste receptorfunctionalized field effect transistor as a human-like nanobioelectronic tongue. Nano Letters, 2012, 13(1):172-178.

Schütz S, Schöning M J, Schroth P, et al. An insect-based BioFET as a bioelectronic nose. Sensors and Actuators B:Chemical, 2000, 65(1):291-295.

Ramoni R, Bellucci S, Grycznyski I, et al. The protein scaffold of the lipocalin odorant-binding protein is suitable for the design of new biosensors for the detection of explosive components. Journal of Physics:Condensed Matter, 2007, 19(39):395012.

Wei Y, Brandazza A, Pelosi P. Binding of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons to mutants of odorant-binding protein:a first step towards biosensors for environmental monitoring. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA)-Proteins and Proteomics, 2008, 1784(4):666-671.

Corcelli A, Lobasso S, Lopalco P, et al. Detection of explosives by olfactory sensory neurons. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 2010, 175(1):1096-1100.

Suska A, Ibáñez A B, Lundström I, et al. G protein-coupled receptor mediated trimethylamine sensing. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 2009, 25(4):715-720.

Schütz S, Weissbecker B, Hummel H E, et al. Insect antenna as a smoke detector. Nature, 1999, 398(6725):298-299.