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Biochip spots single viruses

October 21, 2004

Environmental sensors and handheld devices that quickly and easily detect and identify individual viruses would provide early warning of infections in individuals, the spread of disease in populations, and biological weapons attacks.

Harvard University researchers led by Charles Lieber, a professor of chemistry, have built a detector from nanowire transistors that can identify individual virus particles in real time in unpurified samples. The prototype uses antibody proteins attached to… read more

Biochip puts it all together

December 4, 2003

Researchers from Arizona State University have fabricated a lab-on-a-chip that can detect and analyze microorganisms and chemicals and is very cheap to produce.

The chip could eventually be used in portable devices that do genetic analysis, environmental testing, and biological warfare agent detection in the field.

What sets the chip apart from other prototype biochips is that it carries out all the work needed to prepare a sample… read more

Biochip Mimics The Body To Reveal Toxicity Of Industrial Compounds

December 18, 2007

A reseach team has developed two biochips that combine to reveal the potential toxicity of chemicals and drug candidates on various organs in the human body, and whether those compounds will become toxic when metabolized in the body, all in one experiment without the use of live animals.

The technology could have applications in personalized medicine. The two chips could someday be used to determine the levels and combinations… read more

Biochip makes droplet test tubes

March 8, 2004

A programmable biochip that uses an array of electrodes to place water droplets on a surface, insert substances into the droplets, and move and merge the droplets, with no moving parts, could eventually be miniaturized and incorporated into portable medical, biological and chemical diagnostic devices.

These can form the core of versatile, automated, microscale devices for performing chemical and biological assays at or near the point of care.

‘Biochemiresistor’ sensor is fast, super-sensitive

June 1, 2012


A new class of biosensor that can detect exceptionally small traces of contaminants in liquids in just 40 minutes has been developed by a University of New South Wales (UNSW)-led team of researchers.

Known as a biochemiresistor, it meets a long-standing challenge to create a sensor that is both super-sensitive to the presence of chemical compounds and responds quickly.

It has countless potential uses… read more

Biochemical clues to long lifespan revealed

February 20, 2004

Researchers at Children’s Hospital Boston have found that longer life results, at least in part, from biochemical interactions that boost cells’ ability to resist environmental stresses while inhibiting them from committing suicide.

The team found that the Sir2 gene regulates a group of proteins known as FOXO transcription factors. These proteins have been linked with longevity; they control the expression of genes that regulate cell suicide, and also enable… read more

BioCDs could allow for rapid disease tests

May 20, 2004

While-you-wait medical tests that screen patients for thousands of disease markers by detecting proteins could be possible with “BioCDs” –compact-disc technology patented by a team of Purdue University scientists led by physicist David D. Nolte.

CDs ordinarily store digital information as billions of tiny “pits” in their surface. The test transforms these into miniature test tubes that can hold a trace quantity of a chemical that reacts to a… read more

Biobutanol: Next generation of biofuels

May 24, 2011

Scientists at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) are researching ways to turn wood into sustainable biobutanol.

Biobutanol is one of a handful of fuels that can be produced from wood sugars; the specific fuel that is produced depends on what kind of organism is used to ferment the sugar.

Biobutanol offers several advantages over the ethanol that is commonly mixed… read more


May 21, 2003

Some tiny new machines may be biomedical devices that could deliver drugs to precise targets inside your body, or carry out internal repairs on the spot. Nanotechnologists are working at the level of individual atoms and molecules, either to create new materials with astonishing properties, or to build miniscule machines. Right now, prototypes of these miracle machines exist. Some are made of natural molecules; others are hybrids of molecules and… read more

Bio-Whatchamacallit: Tom Ridge’s ‘Crazy’ Plan to Watch the Sky for Spores

March 12, 2003

To give emergency workers the heads-up on bioterrorism attacks, researchers are monitoring the air for bioagents as well as hospitals for signs of outbreaks of nonspecific illnesses or symptoms.

Bio-sensor puts slime mould at its heart

May 18, 2007

A sensor chip controlled not by wires and transistors, but by a living slime mould marks an important step towards more widespread use of biologically-driven components and devices.

Bio-printing tissues for cheaper, faster drug testing

3D-printing technology specifically tailored to printing biological materials, not repurposed
March 28, 2014


Bio-printed tissues can help better predict and test whether a drug will be effective on people and at less cost, researchers at the University of British Columbia Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and spinoff Aspect Biosystems hope to prove.

Ultimately, this work could also lead to growing organs for human transplant.

Developing a new drug costs upward of $4 billion, a fee that gets passed… read more

Bio-inspired transparent synthetic materials could protect cars and people

April 15, 2014


MIT researchers have analyzed the shells of a sea creature, the mollusk Placuna placenta to determine exactly why they are so resistant to penetration and damage — even though they are 99 percent calcite, a weak, brittle mineral. The shells are exceptionally tough but clear enough to read through,

The properties of this natural armor make it a promising template for the development of bio-inspired synthetic materials… read more

Bio-inspired catalyst to lower cost of producing hydrogen

February 1, 2013

Bioinspired iron-based catalyst. Key atoms and groups are indicated. The color convention throughout is Fe atoms, brown; S atoms, yellow; P atoms, violet; C atoms, gray; N atoms, blue; O atoms, red; and H atoms, white. (Credit: Patrick H.-L. Sit et al./PNAS)

Hydro­gen has tremen­dous poten­tial as an eco-friendly fuel, but it is expen­sive to pro­duce. Now researchers at Prince­ton Uni­ver­sity and Rut­gers Uni­ver­sity have moved a step closer to har­ness­ing nature to pro­duce hydro­gen.

The team, led by Prince­ton chem­istry pro­fes­sor Annabella Sel­l­oni, takes inspi­ra­tion from bac­te­ria that make hydro­gen from water, using enzymes called di-iron hydro­ge­nases.

Cheap components = cost-effective

They used… read more

Bio-inspired Assembly of Nanoparticle Building Blocks

November 30, 2006
V-shaped amphiphilic molecules containing gold nanoparticles form cylindrical micelles when exposed to water

Chemists at Rice University have discovered how to assemble gold and silver nanoparticle building blocks into larger structures based on a novel method that harkens back to one of nature’s oldest known chemical innovations — the self-assembly of lipid membranes that surround every living cell.

Researchers believe the new method will allow them to create a wide variety of useful materials, including extra-potent cancer drugs and more… read more

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