Nanotechnology Now





Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

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

Squeezed quantum cats May 28th, 2015

New chip makes testing for antibiotic-resistant bacteria faster, easier: Researchers at the University of Toronto design diagnostic chip to reduce testing time from days to one hour, allowing doctors to pick the right antibiotic the first time May 28th, 2015

Collaboration could lead to biodegradable computer chips May 28th, 2015

Arrowhead to Present at Jefferies 2015 Healthcare Conference May 27th, 2015

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

Collaboration could lead to biodegradable computer chips May 28th, 2015

Nanotechnology identifies brain tumor types through MRI 'virtual biopsy' in animal studies: If results are confirmed in humans, tumor cells could someday be diagnosed by MRI imaging and treated with tumor-specific IV injections; new NIH grant will fund future study May 27th, 2015

Who needs water to assemble DNA? Non-aqueous solvent supports DNA nanotechnology May 27th, 2015

One step closer to a single-molecule device: Columbia Engineering researchers first to create a single-molecule diode -- the ultimate in miniaturization for electronic devices -- with potential for real-world applications May 25th, 2015

Nanomedicine

New chip makes testing for antibiotic-resistant bacteria faster, easier: Researchers at the University of Toronto design diagnostic chip to reduce testing time from days to one hour, allowing doctors to pick the right antibiotic the first time May 28th, 2015

Arrowhead to Present at Jefferies 2015 Healthcare Conference May 27th, 2015

Seeing the action: UCSB researchers develop a novel device to image the minute forces and actions involved in cell membrane hemifusion May 27th, 2015

Nanotechnology identifies brain tumor types through MRI 'virtual biopsy' in animal studies: If results are confirmed in humans, tumor cells could someday be diagnosed by MRI imaging and treated with tumor-specific IV injections; new NIH grant will fund future study May 27th, 2015

Discoveries

Squeezed quantum cats May 28th, 2015

New chip makes testing for antibiotic-resistant bacteria faster, easier: Researchers at the University of Toronto design diagnostic chip to reduce testing time from days to one hour, allowing doctors to pick the right antibiotic the first time May 28th, 2015

Collaboration could lead to biodegradable computer chips May 28th, 2015

Who needs water to assemble DNA? Non-aqueous solvent supports DNA nanotechnology May 27th, 2015

Announcements

Squeezed quantum cats May 28th, 2015

New chip makes testing for antibiotic-resistant bacteria faster, easier: Researchers at the University of Toronto design diagnostic chip to reduce testing time from days to one hour, allowing doctors to pick the right antibiotic the first time May 28th, 2015

Collaboration could lead to biodegradable computer chips May 28th, 2015

Controlled Release of Anticorrosive Materials in Spot by Nanocarriers May 27th, 2015

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

One step closer to a single-molecule device: Columbia Engineering researchers first to create a single-molecule diode -- the ultimate in miniaturization for electronic devices -- with potential for real-world applications May 25th, 2015

What makes cancer cells spread? New device offers clues May 19th, 2015

Researchers build new fermion microscope: Instrument freezes and images 1,000 individual fermionic atoms at once May 13th, 2015

International and U.S. Students and Teachers Headed to Toronto for 34th Annual International Space Development ConferenceŽ: Students competed in prestigious NSS-NASA Ames Space Settlement Design Contest May 9th, 2015

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