Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Simple New Method Detects Contaminants in Life-Saving Drug

19.11.2008
The blood-thinning drug heparin is highly effective when used to prevent and treat blood clots in veins, arteries and lungs, but earlier this year its reputation as a lifesaver was sullied when contaminated heparin products caused serious allergic reactions that led to a large number of deaths.

Now, University of Michigan researchers have demonstrated a simple, inexpensive method for detecting contaminants in heparin, a development that could prevent such tragedies in the future.

The new method is described in a paper published online Nov. 14 in the journal Analytical Chemistry.

The method relies on potentiometric polyanion sensors originally developed in the lab of U-M researcher Mark Meyerhoff as a tool for detecting heparin in blood. In the latest work, Meyerhoff and coworkers show that the disposable sensors also can be used to distinguish pure heparin from heparin that is tainted with small quantities of oversulfated chondroitin sulfate (OSCS), the culprit in the recent deaths.

"In this technique, the magnitude of the voltage you get from the sensing membrane is dependent on polyion charge density," Meyerhoff said, "and because the contaminant has a higher charge density than heparin, the method allows us to detect the contaminant in the presence of excess heparin."

The new method is simpler and less expensive than analytical methods such as nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and capillary electrophoresis (CE), which have been suggested for detection of OSCS contaminants.

Meyerhoff, who is the Philip J. Elving Professor of Chemistry, envisions the procedure being used on site in drug manufacturing plants to screen raw materials or finalized, biomedical grade heparin products for contaminants.

Meyerhoff's coauthors on the paper are graduate student Lin Wang and former graduate student Stacey Buchanan, who is now a faculty member at Henry Ford Community College in Dearborn, Mich.

For more information:

Mark Meyerhoff: http://www.ns.umich.edu/htdocs/public/experts/ExpDisplay.php?beginswith=Meyerhoff

Analytical Chemistry: http://pubs.acs.org/journals/ancham/

U.S. Food and Drug Administration information on heparin contamination: http://www.fda.gov/cder/drug/infopage/heparin/heparinQA.htm

Nancy Ross-Flanigan | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.umich.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
15.12.2017 | Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard

nachricht New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists
15.12.2017 | Louisiana State University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>