Insights into Surface Ion-imprinted Materials for Heavy Metal Ion Treatment: Challenges and Opportunities

Chunxia Ding, Yaocheng Deng, Austin Merchant, Jiaying Su, Guangyong Zeng, Xiuyu Long, Mei E. Zhong, Lihua Yang, Daoxin Gong, Lianyang Bai, Xuguo Zhou, Xiangying Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Surface ion-imprinting technology (SIIT) is a novel and effective alternative to conventional methods of preparing ion-imprinted polymers. SIIT involves the coating of support materials with a polymeric layer that selectively binds with imprinted metal ions, particularly heavy metal ions. Given its specificity, predictability, and stability, SIIT has been quickly adopted in ion detection, separation, enrichment, and sensing. Here, building on the latest advances in this emerging new technology, we carried out a systematic review to summarize the 1) principles and basic components of surface ion-imprinted polymers (SIIPs); 2) preparations, properties, advantages, and disadvantages of three types of SIIP supporting materials, including inorganic (minerals, carbonaceous materials, metal oxides), organic, and composite (organic/organic, organic/inorganic, inorganic/inorganic) supports; 3) current applications of SIIT, and 4) future challenges and opportunities related to SIIT. Finally, perspectives and future research are discussed to address the pressing need for the development of SIIT for heavy metal ion treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-134
Number of pages12
JournalSeparation and Purification Reviews
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Surface ion imprinting
  • adsorption
  • heavy metal ions
  • support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation


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