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Full Stream Name: Practical Molecular Sensors

Research Educator: Pedro Metola

Principal Investigators: Eric Anslyn, Andy Ellington & Richard Crooks

Credit Options: Spring & Fall

Can we take existing academic sensors and novel technologies, to expand, facilitate, and translate them to truly practical applications?

This stream will focus on the implementation of several sensing protocols in existing analytical devices to further their potential, as well as explore a new approach to selective molecular recognition. There will be three distinct branches of research. The first project will involve the adaptation of an electrochemical analytical method on a paper platform for the determination of hormones in biological media. In the second project the students will use the in vitro technique of aptamer selection (SELEX) to find those nucleotide compounds that bind to receptor-analyte complexes as a means to impart to them selectivity or enhanced binding abilities against targets like polysaccharides and nerve agents. The students in the third project of this stream will be tasked with translating colorimetric assays into a handheld spectroscopic device with the goal of utilization in enology field tests and rapid drug analysis.

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Chemistry