Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Breakthrough in sensing at the nanoscale

Abstract:
Researchers have made a breakthrough discovery in identifying the world's most sensitive nanoparticle and measuring it from a distance using light. These super-bright, photostable and background-free nanocrystals enable a new approach to highly advanced sensing technologies using optical fibres.

Breakthrough in sensing at the nanoscale

Adelaide, Australia | Posted on September 1st, 2013

This discovery, by a team of researchers from Macquarie University, the University of Adelaide, and Peking University, opens the way for rapid localisation and measurement of cells within a living environment at the nanoscale, such as the changes to a single living cell in the human body in response to chemical signals.

Published in Nature Nanotechnology today, the research outlines a new approach to advanced sensing that has been facilitated by bringing together a specific form of nanocrystal, or "SuperDot™" with a special kind of optical fibre that enables light to interact with tiny (nanoscale) volumes of liquid.

"Up until now, measuring a single nanoparticle would have required placing it inside a very bulky and expensive microscope," says Professor Tanya Monro, Director of the University of Adelaide's Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (IPAS) and ARC Australian Laureate Fellow. "For the first time, we've been able to detect a single nanoparticle at one end of an optical fibre from the other end. That opens up all sorts of possibilities in sensing."

"Using optical fibres we can get to many places such as inside the living human brain, next to a developing embryo, or within an artery ‒ locations that are inaccessible to conventional measurement tools.

"This advance ultimately paves the way to breakthroughs in medical treatment. For example, measuring a cell's reaction in real time to a cancer drug means doctors could tell at the time treatment is being delivered whether or not a person is responding to the therapy."

The performance of sensing at single molecular level had previously been limited by both insufficient signal strength and interference from background noise. The special optical fibre engineered at IPAS also proved useful in understanding the properties of nanoparticles. "Material scientists have faced a huge challenge in increasing the brightness of nanocrystals," says Dr. Jin, ARC Fellow at Macquarie University's Advanced Cytometry Laboratories. "Using these optical fibres, however, we have been given unprecedented insight into the light emissions. Now, thousands of emitters can be incorporated into a single SuperDot™ - creating a far brighter, and more easily detectable nanocrystal."

Under infrared illumination, these SuperDots™ selectively produce bright blue, red and infrared light, with a staggering thousand times more sensitivity than existing materials. "Neither the glass of the optical fibre nor other background biological molecules respond to infrared, so that removed the background signal issue. By exciting these SuperDots™ we were able to lower the detection limit to the ultimate level - a single nanoparticle," says Jin.

"The trans-disciplinary research from multiple institutions has paved the way for this innovative discovery," says Jin, "with the interface of experts in nanomaterials, photonics engineering, and biomolecular frontiers."

"These joint efforts will ultimately benefit patients around the world - for example, our industry partners Minomic International Ltd and Patrys Ltd are developing uses for SuperDots™ in cancer diagnostic kits, detecting incredibly low numbers of biomarkers within conditions like prostate and multiple myeloma cancer." Macquarie is now actively seeking other industrial partners with the capacity to jointly develop solutions outside of these fields.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Dr Dayong Jin (email)
Senior Lecturer, Advanced
Cytometry Laboratories
Macquarie University
Business: +61 9850 4168
Mobile: +61 433 875 470

Professor Tanya Monro (email)
website
Director, Institute for Photonics & Advanced Sensing
School of Chemistry and Physics
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8303 3955
Mobile: 0400 649 369

Ms Robyn Mills (email)
Media and Communications Officer
The University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 6341
Mobile: +61 410 689 084

For queries about the SuperDotTM technology:
Joanna Wheatley (email)
Media Manager
Macquarie University
Business: +61 2 9850 1039

Copyright © University of Adelaide

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

FEI Celebrates Shipment of 1,000th Helios DualBeam System: FEI’s Helios Family has lead the DualBeam technology race and is widely used across the semiconductor, materials science, life sciences and oil & gas industries August 31st, 2016

Colors from darkness: Researchers develop alternative approach to quantum computing August 31st, 2016

Diamonds and quantum information processing on the nano scale August 31st, 2016

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

Nanomedicine

Designing ultrasound tools with Lego-like proteins August 29th, 2016

Nanofiber scaffolds demonstrate new features in the behavior of stem and cancer cells August 25th, 2016

Johns Hopkins scientists track metabolic pathways to find drug combination for pancreatic cancer August 25th, 2016

50 years after the release of the film 'Fantastic Voyage,' science upstages fiction: Science upstages fiction with nanorobotic agents designed to travel in the human body to treat cancer August 25th, 2016

Sensors

Graphene key to growing 2-dimensional semiconductor with extraordinary properties August 30th, 2016

A promising route to the scalable production of highly crystalline graphene films August 26th, 2016

Down to the wire: ONR researchers and new bacteria August 18th, 2016

'Sniffer plasmons' could detect explosives: Scientists have proposed a graphene-based spaser that can detect even small amounts of various substances, including explosives August 16th, 2016

Discoveries

FEI Celebrates Shipment of 1,000th Helios DualBeam System: FEI’s Helios Family has lead the DualBeam technology race and is widely used across the semiconductor, materials science, life sciences and oil & gas industries August 31st, 2016

Colors from darkness: Researchers develop alternative approach to quantum computing August 31st, 2016

Diamonds and quantum information processing on the nano scale August 31st, 2016

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

Materials/Metamaterials

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

Graphene key to growing 2-dimensional semiconductor with extraordinary properties August 30th, 2016

A promising route to the scalable production of highly crystalline graphene films August 26th, 2016

Graphene under pressure August 26th, 2016

Announcements

FEI Celebrates Shipment of 1,000th Helios DualBeam System: FEI’s Helios Family has lead the DualBeam technology race and is widely used across the semiconductor, materials science, life sciences and oil & gas industries August 31st, 2016

Colors from darkness: Researchers develop alternative approach to quantum computing August 31st, 2016

Diamonds and quantum information processing on the nano scale August 31st, 2016

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Colors from darkness: Researchers develop alternative approach to quantum computing August 31st, 2016

Diamonds and quantum information processing on the nano scale August 31st, 2016

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

University of Akron researchers find thin layers of water can become ice-like at room temperature: Results could lead to an assortment of anti-friction solutions August 30th, 2016

Photonics/Optics/Lasers

Colors from darkness: Researchers develop alternative approach to quantum computing August 31st, 2016

Diamonds and quantum information processing on the nano scale August 31st, 2016

Graphene key to growing 2-dimensional semiconductor with extraordinary properties August 30th, 2016

Silicon nanoparticles trained to juggle light: Research findings prove the capabilities of silicon nanoparticles for flexible data processing in optical communication systems August 25th, 2016

Research partnerships

Device to control 'color' of electrons in graphene provides path to future electronics August 31st, 2016

New electrical energy storage material shows its power: Nanomaterial combines attributes of both batteries and supercapacitors August 25th, 2016

New theory could lead to new generation of energy friendly optoelectronics: Researchers at Queen's University Belfast and ETH Zurich, Switzerland, have created a new theoretical framework which could help physicists and device engineers design better optoelectronics August 23rd, 2016

A new way to display the 3-D structure of molecules: Metal-organic frameworks provide a new platform for solving the structure of hard-to-study samples August 21st, 2016

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







Car Brands
Buy website traffic