Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Artificial membranes can reveal biological weapons

16.01.2004


Today there is a great need for portable equipment that can quickly detect chemical and biological weapons such as nerve gases, viruses, bacteria, and toxins. In a new dissertation the Swedish researcher Inga Gustafsson shows that artificial membranes can be used for this purpose in future biosensors.



Biosensors have already proven to be useful in the detection of impurities in food and water, for example. They have also been used in industrial processes, clinical analyses, and the development of pharmaceuticals.

In her dissertation, Inga Gustafsson, Department of Chemistry, Umeå University, and FOI, the Swedish Defence Research Agency , studies artificial membranes in biosensors.


Many hazardous substances bind to receptors in cell membranes at some stage. By using artificial membranes with specific binding sites it has been shown that these membranes can be used in future biosensors for detecting hazardous substances.

Inga Gustafsson’s study has helped identify factors that can affect the construction of model membranes on solid surfaces. These have proven to be of use in studying reactions occurring on the cell membrane. With further development they can be suitable for use as sensor surfaces in biosensors.

The membranes have been characterized and tested using various techniques. The experiments could be repeated with good stability. Membrane proteins have been built into the membranes and analyzed in regard to retained activity. The proteins introduced were bacteriorhodopsin, cytochrome oxidase, acetylcholine esterase, and the nicotine-like acetylcholine receptor.

The investigation revealed that the proteins were individually distributed in the membrane and that they retained their activity. Certain proteins were active for several weeks. Various glycolipids that can act as receptors for bacteria, viruses, and toxins were also introduced in the artificial membranes. The binding of the toxin ricin to these receptors was studied. The binding of the toxin to the membrane with glycolipids varied depending on pH, charge, and length of the sugar segment of the sugar lipid.

Carina Dahlberg | alfa
Further information:
http://www.umu.se/english

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Routing gene therapy directly into the brain
07.12.2017 | Boston Children's Hospital

nachricht New Hope for Cancer Therapies: Targeted Monitoring may help Improve Tumor Treatment
01.12.2017 | Berliner Institut für Gesundheitsforschung / Berlin Institute of Health (BIH)

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

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...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

Im Focus: Virtual Reality for Bacteria

An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications

Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...

Im Focus: A space-time sensor for light-matter interactions

Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.

The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...

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

Midwife and signpost for photons

11.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

How do megacities impact coastal seas? Searching for evidence in Chinese marginal seas

11.12.2017 | Earth Sciences

PhoxTroT: Optical Interconnect Technologies Revolutionized Data Centers and HPC Systems

11.12.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>