Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Toxin detection as close as an inkjet printer

15.07.2009
If that office inkjet printer has become just another fixture, it's time to take a fresh look at it. Similar technology may soon be used to develop paper-based biosensors that can detect certain harmful toxins that can cause food poisoning or be used as bioterrorism agents.

In a paper published in the July issue of Analytical Chemistry, John Brennan and his research team at McMaster University, working with the Sentinel Bioactive Paper Network, describe a method for printing a toxin-detecting biosensor on paper using a FujiFilm Dimatix Materials Printer.

The researchers demonstrated the concept on the detection of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors such as paraoxon and aflatoxin B1 on paper using a "lateral flow" sensing approach similar to that used in a home pregnancy test strip.

The process involves formulating an ink like the one found in computer printer cartridges but with special additives to make the ink biocompatible. An ink comprised of biocompatible silica nanoparticles is first deposited on paper, followed by a second ink containing the enzyme, and the resulting bio-ink forms a thin film of enzyme that is entrapped in the silica on paper. When the enzyme is exposed to a toxin, reporter molecules in the ink change colour in a manner that is dependent on the concentration of the toxin in the sample.

This simple and cost-effective method of adhering biochemical reagents to paper is expected to bring the concept of bioactive paper a significant step closer to commercialization. The goal for bioactive paper is to provide a rapid, portable, disposable and inexpensive way of detecting harmful substances, including toxins, pathogens and viruses, without the need for sophisticated instrumentation. The research showed that the printed enzyme retains full activity for at least two months when stored properly, suggesting that such sensor strips should have a good shelf life.

Portable bio-sensing papers are expected to be extremely useful in monitoring environmental and food-based toxins, as well as in remote settings in less industrialized countries where simple bioassays are essential for the first stages of detecting disease.

Applications for bioactive paper also include clinical applications in neuroscience, drug assessment, and pharmaceutical development.

Gene Nakonechny | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mcmaster.ca

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Synthetic nanoparticles achieve the complexity of protein molecules
24.01.2017 | Carnegie Mellon University

nachricht Immune Defense Without Collateral Damage
24.01.2017 | Universität Basel

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Arctic melt ponds form when meltwater clogs ice pores

24.01.2017 | Earth Sciences

Synthetic nanoparticles achieve the complexity of protein molecules

24.01.2017 | Life Sciences

PPPL physicist uncovers clues to mechanism behind magnetic reconnection

24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>