In this study, a novel spinach (Spinacia oleracea) tissue homogenate-based biosensor for determination of oxalate in urine was developed. The biosensor was constructed by immobilizing tissue homogenate of spinach (S. oleracea) onto a high-sensitive teflon membrane of a dissolved oxygen (DO) probe. For the stability of the biosensor, general immobilization techniques were used to secure the spinach tissue homogenate in gelatin-glutaraldehyde cross-linking matrix. In the optimization and characterization studies, the amount of spinach tissue homogenate and gelatin, optimum pH, optimum temperature and thermal stability, interference effects, linear range and repeatability were investigated. A typical calibration curve for the sensor revealed a linear range of 1 x 10(-5)-10 x 10(-5) M oxalate. In repeatability studies, variation coefficient (CV) was calculated as 1.8%. Of the various substrates tested, only oxalate was found to be specific, with a relative activity of 100%. The method was applied to the determination of oxalate in urine. The results showed that the method was applicable to oxalate determination in urine specifically and selectively. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.