Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > New optical sensor can determine if molecules are left or right 'handed'

A University of Central Florida team has designed a nanostructured optical sensor that for the first time can efficiently detect molecular chirality -- a property of molecular spatial twist that defines its biochemical properties.
CREDIT
University of Central Florida: Karen Norum
A University of Central Florida team has designed a nanostructured optical sensor that for the first time can efficiently detect molecular chirality -- a property of molecular spatial twist that defines its biochemical properties. CREDIT University of Central Florida: Karen Norum

Abstract:
A University of Central Florida team has designed a nanostructured optical sensor that for the first time can efficiently detect molecular chirality - a property of molecular spatial twist that defines its biochemical properties.

New optical sensor can determine if molecules are left or right 'handed'

Orlando, FL | Posted on June 13th, 2018

Determining chirality is critical for new drug development.

Think of molecules as having little hands. They are not identical, but they serve almost undistinguishable functions. You can grip, pinch, punch and open your hands, regardless of whether you use your left or right hand. But when you get to some functions, such as writing, it matters if you are right-handed or left-handed.

Scientists have struggled to determine if molecules have unique left- or right-hand functions because their physical attributes such as length, weight, density, elasticity, etc. appear to be identical.

UCF's NanoScience Technology Center Associate Professor Debashis Chanda and Ph.D. student Abraham Vazquez-Guardado have figured out a unique way to do it. The interaction between light and the specially designed nanostructure they built creates a strong chiral light field - called superchiral light. Such a nanostructure does not have geometrical chirality yet it creates two opposite light chirality (left or right) on demand. When light and matter's chirality match, just as hand-shaking with our right hand, successful identification happens. Therefore, this rotating light field has the ability to probe and identify any chiral molecule like drugs, proteins or DNAs. The light field lets scientist see the tiny hands, so to speak.

"Chirality detection is vital in the drug-development industry, where newly synthesized chiral drugs also have two-handed strands and always form with the same likeliness during the synthesis process," Chanda said. "But while one chiral strand constitutes the active element in the drug, its opposite can turn out to be toxic or render detrimental side effects. Consequently, pharmacological and toxicological characterization of chirality plays a crucial role in the pharmaceutical drug industry and FDA approval process."

By being able to detect chirality at this level, scientists will have a better way to identify what may be causing bad side effects or perhaps finding places to upload life-saving drugs.

In this preliminary study, the UCF team demonstrated chiral molecule-detection sensitivity that is four times higher compared to the conventional technique, but without the extensive and tedious sample preparation and at much lower sample volume.

The single optical element thin-film chirality sensor, when fabricated based on low cost and large-area nanoimprinting technique, will immensely benefit drug design and protein-conformation identification, both of paramount importance in treating and understanding several diseases, Chanda added.

###

The Florida Space Institute/NASA, Northrop Grumman Corporation and DARPA help fund the research.

####

About University of Central Florida
Founded in 1963 with a commitment to expanding opportunity and demanding excellence, the University of Central Florida develops the talent needed to advance the prosperity and welfare of our society. With more than 66,000 students, UCF is one of the nation's largest universities, offering more than 200 degree programs at its main campus in Orlando and more than a dozen other locations in Central Florida and online. UCF was ranked by U.S. News & World Report as among the nation's top 25 most innovative universities along with Harvard, Stanford and Duke, and has been described by The Washington Post as "part of a vanguard that is demolishing the popular belief that exclusivity is a virtue in higher education." For more information, visit ucf.edu.

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Zenaida Gonzalez Kotala

407-823-6120

Copyright © University of Central Florida

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 Links

Their findings were recently published in the Physical Review Letters journal (PRL, 120, 137601, 2018):

Related News Press

Imaging

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

New technology can detect hundreds of proteins in a single sample: Improvement of barcoding technique offers cost-effective alternative to current technology August 13th, 2018

News and information

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte: Milestone of energy efficiency in information technology -- Publication in Advanced Materials August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

Thin films

CTI Materials drives nano commercialization with it's patented surfactant free nanoparticle dispersions August 15th, 2018

A colossal breakthrough for topological spintronics: BiSb expands the potential of topological insulators for ultra-low-power electronic devices August 2nd, 2018

Picosunís ALD solutions make quality watches tick July 26th, 2018

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

Research brief: UMN researchers use green gold to rapidly detect and identify harmful bacteria August 15th, 2018

Particles pull last drops of oil from well water: Rice University engineers find nanoscale solution to 'produced water' problem August 15th, 2018

Possible Futures

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte: Milestone of energy efficiency in information technology -- Publication in Advanced Materials August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

Nanomedicine

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

Research brief: UMN researchers use green gold to rapidly detect and identify harmful bacteria August 15th, 2018

New technology can detect hundreds of proteins in a single sample: Improvement of barcoding technique offers cost-effective alternative to current technology August 13th, 2018

Scientists squeeze nanocrystals in a liquid droplet into a solid-like state and back again: Simple chemical technique transforms crystal mixture where 2 liquids meet August 9th, 2018

Sensors

CTI Materials drives nano commercialization with it's patented surfactant free nanoparticle dispersions August 15th, 2018

Optical fibers that can 'feel' the materials around them August 7th, 2018

A molecular switch at the edge of graphene July 27th, 2018

Leti & Partners Launch Pilot Program to Assess New Perception Sensors for Autonomous Vehicles July 5th, 2018

Discoveries

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte: Milestone of energy efficiency in information technology -- Publication in Advanced Materials August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

Announcements

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte: Milestone of energy efficiency in information technology -- Publication in Advanced Materials August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

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

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

UVA multidisciplinary engineering team designs technology for smart materials: The invention could lead to devices and manufactured goods, such as fabrics, that can dynamically regulate between thermally insulating and cooling August 17th, 2018

Smallest transistor worldwide switches current with a single atom in solid electrolyte: Milestone of energy efficiency in information technology -- Publication in Advanced Materials August 17th, 2018

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

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

Scientists turn to the quantum realm to improve energy transportation August 17th, 2018

Research brief: UMN researchers use green gold to rapidly detect and identify harmful bacteria August 15th, 2018

Particles pull last drops of oil from well water: Rice University engineers find nanoscale solution to 'produced water' problem August 15th, 2018

Breaking down the Wiedemann-Franz law: In a study exploring the coupling between heat and particle currents in a gas of strongly interacting atoms, physicists at ETH Zurich find puzzling behaviours August 10th, 2018

Nanobiotechnology

Novel nanoparticle-based approach detects and treats oral plaque without drugs August 17th, 2018

Research brief: UMN researchers use green gold to rapidly detect and identify harmful bacteria August 15th, 2018

New technology can detect hundreds of proteins in a single sample: Improvement of barcoding technique offers cost-effective alternative to current technology August 13th, 2018

Scientists squeeze nanocrystals in a liquid droplet into a solid-like state and back again: Simple chemical technique transforms crystal mixture where 2 liquids meet August 9th, 2018

Photonics/Optics/Lasers

Scientists create antilaser for ultracold atoms condensate August 16th, 2018

Breaking down the Wiedemann-Franz law: In a study exploring the coupling between heat and particle currents in a gas of strongly interacting atoms, physicists at ETH Zurich find puzzling behaviours August 10th, 2018

Optical fibers that can 'feel' the materials around them August 7th, 2018

NUST MISIS scientists present metamaterial for solar cells and nanooptics July 23rd, 2018

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



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project