This image, taken with an optical microscope, demonstrates the successful test of a prototype for a new class of miniature devices to study synthetic cell membranes in an effort to speed the discovery of new drugs for a variety of diseases, including cancer. Purdue University researchers created a chip about one centimeter square that holds thousands of tiny vessels sitting on top of a material that contains numerous pores. The researchers tested the devices with an enzyme that produces a blue color when combined with a liquid that contains molecules small enough to easily pass through the pores. The enzyme was placed inside the vessels – on the inner surface of the "nanoporous" membranes – and the liquid was placed outside each vessel so that it covered the opposite side of the membranes. When the liquid diffused through the membranes pores, it mixed with the enzyme, causing a reaction and turning blue in the process, which demonstrated that the device works. (School of Chemical Engineering, Purdue University)
Researchers at Purdue University have built and demonstrated a prototype for a new class of miniature devices to study synthetic cell membranes in an effort to speed the discovery of new drugs for a variety of diseases, including cancer.
The researchers created a chip about one centimeter square that holds thousands of tiny vessels sitting on top of a material that contains numerous pores. This "nanoporous" material makes it possible to carry out reactions inside the vessels. The goal is to produce "laboratories-on-a-chip" less than a half-inch square that might contain up to a million test chambers, or "reactors," each capable of screening an individual drug, said Gil Lee, the project’s leader and an associate professor of chemical engineering. "What we are reporting now is a proof of concept," said Lee, one of three researchers who wrote a paper that details new findings in the current issue (Feb. 15) of the journal Langmuir. The two other researchers are Zhigang Wang, a postdoctoral fellow at Purdue; and Richard Haasch, a research scientist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
The work is part of overall research being carried out by an interdisciplinary team of scientists and engineers who are members of a Center for Membrane Protein Biotechnology. The center was created at Purdue in 2003 through a grant from the Indiana 21st Century Research and Technology Fund, established by the state of Indiana to promote high-tech research and to help commercialize innovations. The vessels discussed in the research paper are cylindrical cavities that are open at the top and sealed at the bottom with a material called alumina, which contains numerous pores measured in nanometers, or billionths of a meter.
Emil Venere | EurekAlert!
Fine organic particles in the atmosphere are more often solid glass beads than liquid oil droplets
21.04.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemie
Study overturns seminal research about the developing nervous system
21.04.2017 | University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...
Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.
A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy