Navigation Links
New nanochemistry technique encases single molecules in microdroplets
Date:9/22/2009

Inventing a useful new tool for creating chemical reactions between single molecules, scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have employed microfluidicsthe manipulation of fluids at the microscopic scaleto make microdroplets that contain single molecules of interest. By combining this new microfluidic "droplet-on-demand" method with "optical tweezers" that could merge multiple droplets and cause their molecular contents to react, the research may ultimately lead to a compact, integrated setup for obtaining single-molecule information on the structure and function of important organic materials, such as proteins, enzymes, and DNA.

With the aid of NIST's Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology, physicists Carlos Lpez-Mariscal and Kristian Helmerson created a tiny microfluidic device with a channel through which water can flow. Squeezed into a narrow stream by a mixture of oils whose viscosity, or resistance to flow, exerts pressure on it, the water then enters a narrow constriction. The water's abrupt pressure dropaccompanied by a dash of detergentbreaks its surface tension, splitting it into small droplets. (This same effect occurs when a thin stream of water falling from a faucet breaks up into small drops.)

The droplet sizes are highly uniform and can be tuned by adjusting the width of the constriction. With this technique, the researchers made droplets about a micrometer in diameteror half an attoliter (half a billionth of a billionth of a liter) in volume.

In the microfluidic channel, the water is laced with desired molecules of just the right concentration, so that resulting droplets each pick up on average just one molecule of interest. Inside each droplet, the individual molecules of interest slosh around freely in the relatively roomy sphere, along with the water molecules that make up the bulk of every droplet.

By using laser beams, the researchers can move two or more single-molecule-containing droplets, cause them to coalesce, and observe the reactions through optical methods. For their initial reactions, the researchers are mixing fluorescent molecules that emit different colors, but in the future, they envision more interesting chemical reactions, such as those between an infectious agent and an antibody, or a chromosome and a drug. The researchers can shape a laser beam into any desired pattern and thereby trap not only single drops, but arrays of them, opening up new possibilities for single-molecule spectroscopy.


'/>"/>

Contact: Ben Stein
bstein@nist.gov
301-975-3097
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Breathing technique can reduce frequency, severity of asthma attacks
2. ORNL scientists hone technique to safeguard water supplies
3. Ben-Gurion U. developing new computer techniques to analyze historic Hebrew and Arabic documents
4. Scary ancient spiders revealed in 3-D models, thanks to new imaging technique
5. New advance in revolutionary bullet fingerprinting technique
6. New technique can fast-track better ionic liquids for biomass pre-treatments
7. New MRI technique could mean fewer breast biopsies in high-risk women
8. Can a new implant coating technique create a new six million dollar man?
9. Ovarian transplantation: First baby is born after a new technique
10. Ovarian transplantation: New technique gives greatly improved results in this delicate operation
11. Colon cancer screening technique shows continued promise in new study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
New nanochemistry technique encases single molecules in microdroplets
(Date:5/16/2017)... 2017   Bridge Patient Portal , an ... MD EMR Systems , an electronic medical record ... have established a partnership to build an interface ... GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution (CPS), ... These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery networks ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... , April 24, 2017 ... and partner with  Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) ... "With or without President Trump,s March 6, 2017 ... Terrorist Entry , refugee vetting can be instilled with ... resettlement. (Right now, all refugee applications are suspended ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... April 18, 2017  Socionext Inc., a global expert in SoC-based ... edge server, the M820, which features the company,s hybrid codec technology. ... by Tera Probe, Inc., will be showcased during the upcoming Medtec ... show at the Las Vegas Convention Center ... Click here ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/22/2017)... ... May 22, 2017 , ... Stratevi, a boutique firm that partners ... Coast. It has opened an office in downtown Boston at 745 Atlantic Ave. ... more important to generate evidence on the value they provide, not just to patients, ...
(Date:5/22/2017)... ... May 22, 2017 , ... ... is exhibiting in booth B2 at the Association for Pathology Informatics Annual ... , In addition to demonstrating its Cancer Diagnostic Cockpit and Consultation Portal, Inspirata ...
(Date:5/21/2017)... ... May 20, 2017 , ... ... avoid the lengthy trial and error process by finding the right antidepressant faster. ... also strengthen the doctor-patient relationship through a personalized approach to treatment. ...
(Date:5/19/2017)... ... 19, 2017 , ... The University City Science Center is ... for commercialization, and who are affiliated with the 21 partner academic and research ... now in its tenth round, is the first multi-institutional proof-of-concept program for the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: