Nanoscience and Magnetic Fields Used in Biochemical Tests
News Jan 23, 2017 | Original Story From the University of Central Florida
A UCF researcher has combined cutting-edge nanoscience with a magnetic phenomenon discovered more than 170 years ago, to create a method for speedy medical tests. The discovery, if commercialized, could lead to faster test results for HIV, Lyme disease, syphilis, rotavirus and other infectious conditions.
“I see no reason why a variation of this technique couldn’t be in every hospital throughout the world,” said Shawn Putnam, an assistant professor in the University of Central Florida’s College of Engineering & Computer Science. At the core of the research are nanoparticles, tiny particles that are one-billionth of a meter. Putnam’s team coated nanoparticles with the antibody to BSA, or bovine serum albumin, which is commonly used as the basis of a variety of diagnostic tests.
By mixing the nanoparticles in a test solution, such as one used for a blood test, the BSA proteins preferentially bind with the antibodies that coat the nanoparticles, like a lock and key. That reaction was already well known. Putnam’s team came up with a novel way of measuring the quantity of proteins present. He used nanoparticles with an iron core and applied a magnetic field to the solution, causing the particles to align in a particular formation. As proteins bind to the antibody-coated particles, the rotation of the particles becomes sluggish, which is easy to detect with laser optics.
The interaction of a magnetic field and light is known as Faraday rotation, a principle discovered by scientist Michael Faraday in 1845. Putnam adapted it for biological use. “It’s an old theory, but no one has actually applied this aspect of it,” he said. Other antigens and their unique antibodies could be substituted for the BSA protein used in the research, allowing medical tests for a wide array of infectious diseases.
The proof of concept shows the method could be used to produce biochemical immunology test results in as little as 15 minutes, compared to several hours for ELISA, or enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, which is currently a standard approach for biomolecule detection.
Murdock, R. J., Putnam, S. A., Das, S., Gupta, A., Chase, E. D. Z., & Seal, S. (2017). High-throughput, protein-targeted Biomolecular detection using frequency-domain Faraday rotation spectroscopy. Small. doi:10.1002/smll.201602862
This article has been republished from materials provided by the University of Central Florida. Note: material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.
SCIEX Receive Science and Technology Award at HUPO 2017News
Two researchers from SCIEX received the HUPO 2017 award at the 16th Human Proteome Organization World Congress in Dublin, Ireland.READ MORE
Machine Learning to Increase the Pace of Brain Imaging AnalysisNews
New approach could allow doctors or researchers to quickly identify the data they need, and then rapidly fill in the fine details, making the process faster and more accurate.READ MORE
University of Huddersfield Honorary Award Goes to RSC’s First Woman PresidentNews
The first woman President of the Royal Society of Chemistry, Professor Lesley Yellowlees, will collect an honorary award from University of Huddersfield, which will be presented at the University’s November Award Ceremonies.READ MORE