Many fields, including pharmaceutical, medical, food, biotechnology and bio-threat diagnostics rely heavily on efficient detection of pathogens and/or other types of undesired molecules and organisms. The most notorious drawbacks of established detection methods are their associated time consuming, labor-intensive and costly solutions. With worldwide epidemic outbreaks occurring on a regular basis, there is urgent need to improve and establish new strategies that are rapid, simple and affordable, for the detection of target analytes. Here we propose a new technology based on the detection of birefringence, as an unique optical signal from nano-structured lipidic mesophases, to conclusively solve the issues. This technology was successfully used for the detection of a range of analytes of medical interests, exemplified by disease biomarkers, model bacteria or viruses and parasites using a portable, cost-effective prototype. The main objective of the project is to develop a general lipid-based nano-structured cubic phase biosensor to detect pathogenic microorganisms in less than one hour using minimum sample volume, at a low-cost. In addition, a more advanced, fully functional prototype will be developed for more sensitive and quantitative detection of analytes. While the basic prototype can be used for initial screening and detection of disease markers and/or pathogens, to increase access to affordable quality diagnostics in field studies and resource-poor settings, the advanced prototype is expected to become a general methodology competing with the current expensive technologies.
What is special about the project?
An affordable quality diagnostics can provide early detection and early intervention by which the treatment gap can be closed. The project idea of a common, cost-effective biosensor for rapid detection of pathogens has a great scientific potential and is anticipated to make a tremendous social impact, especially in promoting global health equity, in a world that is rapidly becoming increasingly aware of emerging diseases and epidemic control. Our vision is to use the proposed lipid based technology and device for the initial screening and detection of disease markers and pathogens. In general our technology aims to increase access to affordable quality diagnostics in field studies and resource-poor settings
We have engineered lipidic cubic phases for the rapid detection of biomarkers, bacteria, viruses and parasites. We are developed a methodology for the simultaneous detection of multiple pathogens.
Vallooran et al. Lipidic Cubic Phases as a Versatile Platform for the Rapid Detection of Biomarkers, Viruses, Bacteria, and Parasites. Advanced Functional Materials. 2016, 26, 181.
Persons involved in the project
Last update to this project presentation 17.10.2018