The test can quickly and economically detect adulterants, including the substance responsible for hundreds of illnesses and deaths among patients taking heparin in 2008. The report appears in ACS' journal Analytical Chemistry.
David Keire and Cynthia Sommers explain that in 2008, a number of patients died and hundreds patients became seriously ill after receiving batches of the blood thinner that had been adulterated. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced a major recall of heparin, and scientists identified the culprit — a substance called "oversulfated chondroitin sulfate" (OSCS). OSCS is a synthetic dietary supplement derived from chondroitin sulfate type A that some people take to treat osteoarthritis. Like heparin, OSCS also prevents blood from forming dangerous clots.
But unlike heparin, OSCS can trigger potentially fatal anaphylactic reactions in sensitive individuals. Scientists concluded that OSCS, which is inexpensive, had been intentionally added to heparin as a so-called "economically motivated adulterant" (EMA), to boost profits. Current tests to detect EMAs in heparin are difficult to perform and must be done in laboratories.
To overcome these challenges, the researchers developed a simple color test in which normal heparin samples turn red in color but OSCS contaminated samples do not change color. In the present study, Keire and Sommers wanted to know whether their test could detect additional EMAs. They found that the test could detect several other possible EMAs, such as those that could be made by over-sulfation of waste products formed during heparin production. The researchers say that, on the basis of their results, a portable test to detect even tiny amounts of different EMAs could be developed to insure the safety of the heparin supply chain.
Michael Bernstein | EurekAlert!
Usher syndrome: Gene therapy restores hearing and balance
25.09.2017 | Institut Pasteur
MRI contrast agent locates and distinguishes aggressive from slow-growing breast cancer
25.09.2017 | Case Western Reserve University
At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.
Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...
Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
19.09.2017 | Event News
12.09.2017 | Event News
06.09.2017 | Event News
25.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering
25.09.2017 | Health and Medicine
25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy