Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Artificial nanopore production could lead to early detection of disease

An Atomic Force Microscope image of a 100 nm nanopore in silicon. Green is the molecule of interest in sample that will be run through the nanopore in the lab.
An Atomic Force Microscope image of a 100 nm nanopore in silicon. Green is the molecule of interest in sample that will be run through the nanopore in the lab.

Abstract:
A University of Texas at Arlington multi-disciplinary team has received a $360,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to build artificial nanopores made of silicon that can detect "bad molecules" as a very early indication of cancer and other diseases.

Artificial nanopore production could lead to early detection of disease

Arlington, TX | Posted on April 23rd, 2012

Samir Iqbal, an assistant professor of Electrical Engineering who focuses on nanotechnology, is leading the project. He is working with Purnendu "Sandy" Dasgupta, the Jenkins Garrett Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and Richard Timmons, a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry.

Nanopores are tiny openings about 1,000 times smaller than a human pore on the skin or a human hair, made in very thin silicon chips. The silicon chips are the same material in computer processors and memories.

Iqbal's team will run human blood-derived samples through these artificially created nanopores in a silicon chip and record how the composition may change as a function of disease.

Researchers will measure the reaction between ions of blood and nanopores and compare the data with other non-reactive nanopores, which will determine abnormal levels of particular chemicals that indicate whether a disease is present at the molecular level.

"We know many variants of certain chemicals like enantiomers, or the abnormal amounts of certain chemicals like cholesterol. These chemicals tell us if someone is subject to certain diseases," Iqbal said. "Now we will be able to detect these variants at extremely small amounts and in a portable system format. We'll be able to detect even a few hundred copies of bad molecules to identify risks of diseases like cancer. That is very, very early detection."

Enantiomers are mirror-imaged optical isomers or compounds with the same molecular formula but different structural shapes such as a pair of human hands. They are mirror images of each other but not superimposable.

Another example is thalidomide, a drug introduced in the late 1950s to treat morning sickness in pregnant women. One enantiomer of the drug was found to be a good sedative for morning sickness. The mirror image of that enantiomer, present in the drug formulation, however, caused birth defects, leading to the drug being pulled from the market.

Through the new research, Iqbal and his colleagues would be able to determine similar differences at the molecular level, before the bad variants of new molecules cause devastating effects.

With the assistance from the nanopores, researchers will be able to identify what cancer looks like at the molecular level. That's where the expertise of the two UT Arlington chemists lie, Iqbal said.

Timmons has expertise in inserting chemicals in the nanopores. Dasgupta's expertise is in detecting chemicals in trace amounts.

"It's thrilling that we can have a small broadly applicable platform that will be usable in a variety of areas," Dasgupta said.

Team members said crossover applications for the technology also exist. For instance, the nanopore technology detection could be applied to gauge air or water quality.

"Again, the earlier we know whether a water or air source is polluted, the better off the people who live there will be," Iqbal said.

Carolyn Cason, UT Arlington's interim vice president for research, said such collaborative research advances the University's mission.

"It tells everyone here that we can use resources available to us to solve real-world health problems," Cason said. "This research has health-related consequences that can be felt across the industry."

The grant is an example of the kind of research under way at The University of Texas at Arlington, a comprehensive research institution of nearly 33,500 students in the heart of North Texas.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Herb Booth
Office:817-272-7075
Cell:214-546-1082

Copyright © University of Texas at Arlington

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Graphene holds up under high pressure: Used in filtration membranes, ultrathin material could help make desalination more productive April 24th, 2017

Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight multiple cancer types April 24th, 2017

Nanomedicine

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

New Product Nanoparticle preparation from Intertronics with new Thinky NP-100 Nano Pulveriser April 26th, 2017

Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight multiple cancer types April 24th, 2017

Arrowhead Presents ARC-520 and ARC-521 Clinical Data at The International Liver Congress(TM) April 20th, 2017

Discoveries

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Geoffrey Beach: Drawn to explore magnetism: Materials researcher is working on the magnetic memory of the future April 25th, 2017

Announcements

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Looking for the quantum frontier: Beyond classical computing without fault-tolerance? April 27th, 2017

Metal nanoparticles induced visible-light photocatalysis: Mechanisms, applications, ways of promoting catalytic activity and outlook April 27th, 2017

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals to Webcast Fiscal 2017 Second Quarter Results April 27th, 2017

Grants/Sponsored Research/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Ultracold atom waves may shed light on rogue ocean killers: Rice quantum experiments probe underlying physics of rogue ocean waves April 27th, 2017

Video captures bubble-blowing battery in action: Researchers propose how bubbles form, could lead to smaller lithium-air batteries April 26th, 2017

Nanoparticle vaccine shows potential as immunotherapy to fight multiple cancer types April 24th, 2017

SUNY Polytechnic Institute Announces Total of 172 Teams Selected to Compete in Solar in Your Community Challenge: Teams from 40 states, plus Washington, DC, 2 Territories, and 4 American Indian Reservations, Will Deploy Solar in Underserved Communities April 20th, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project