NanoPundit -Where Society, Science and the Law get really, really small.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Disease Detection and NanoBio Sensors

One of the most exciting areas of nanotechnology is the use of nanosensors, especially in the area of protein detection. Alzheimer’s, cancer, coronary artery disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (Spongiform Encephalopathy; Mad Cow) all produce disctinctive protiens. Sufficiently sensitive protien sensors will be able to detect these protiens and make an early diagnosis of these and other diseases. Currently, Alzheimer’s Disease may only be definitively diagnosed post mortem.

Nanosphere, is working with Northwestern University to further develop a bio-barcode assay which is 100,000 times to one million times more sensitive than other available tests in the detection of a protein in the brain linked to Alzheimer's disease. The more sensitive tests will allow earlier diagnosis and treatment of these diseases. These tests may also speed the development of new treatments for disease by providing feedback as to the efficacy of an experimental treatment.

The bio-barcode assay was developed by researchers at Northwestern University and is now exclusively licensed to Nanosphere. Nanosphere reports that they have provided research laboratories with a manual version of the technology and will provide an automated form later this year.

As regular readers know (all twelve of you) one of my concerns is that the real
benefits of nanotechnology will be lost among stories of self cleaning glass and stain resistant shirts and that the Luddites among us will force impossible levels of regulation on the nanoindustry. As for me I am not worried about regulations on self cleaning glass but lets rush the cancer detection to market.

1 Comments:

  • You keep a nice blog. I just started one myself about Diseases. If you know of anyone who could benefit from Diseases information, then please refer them to my Diseasesinformation site. I'll return the favor by referring my friends to your site.

    By Blogger Disease Index, at 4:33 PM  

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