Navigation Links
A giant step in a miniature world: UZH researcher measures the electrical charge of nano particles

In order to observe the individual particles in a solution, Prof. Madhavi Krishnan and her co-workers entice each particle into an electrostatic trap. It works like this: between two glass plates the size of a chip, the researchers create thousands of round energy holes. The trick is that these holes have just a weak electrostatic charge. The scientists than add a drop of the solution to the plates, whereupon each particle falls into an energy hole and remains trapped there. But the particles do not remain motionless in their trap. Instead, molecules in the solution collide with them continuously, causing the particles to move in a circular motion. We measure these movements, and are then able to determine the charge of each individual particle, explains Prof. Madhavi Krishnan.

Put simply, particles with just a small charge make large circular movements in their traps, while those with a high charge move in small circles. This phenomenon can be compared to that of a light-weight ball which, when thrown, travels further than a heavy one. The US physicist Robert A. Millikan used a similar method 100 years ago in his oil drop experiment to determine the velocity of electrically charged oil drops. In 1923, he received the Nobel Prize in physics in recognition of his achievements. But he examined the drops in a vacuum, Prof. Krishnan explains. We on the other hand are examining nano particles in a solution which itself influences the properties of the particles.

Electrostatic charge of nano drugs packages

For all solutions manufactured industrially, the electrical charge of the nano particles contained therein is also of primary interest, because it is the electrical charge that allows a fluid solution to remain stable and not to develop a lumpy consistency. With our new method, we get a picture of the entire suspension along with all of the particles contained in it, emphasizes Prof. Madhavi Krishnan. A suspension is a fluid in which miniscule particles or drops are finely distributed, for example in milk, blood, various paints, cosmetics, vaccines and numerous pharmaceuticals. The charge of the particles plays a major role in this, the Zurich-based scientist tells us.

One example is the manufacture of medicines that have to be administered in precise doses over a longer period using drug-delivery systems. In this context, nano particles act as packages that transport the drugs to where they need to take effect. Very often, it is their electrical charge that allows them to pass through tissue and cell membranes in the body unobstructed and so to take effect. That's why it is so important to be able to measure their charge. So far most of the results obtained have been imprecise, the researcher tells us.

The new method allows us to even measure in real-time a change in the charge of a single entity, adds Prof. Madhavi Krishnan. This is particularly exciting for basic research and has never before been possible. This is because changes in charge play a role in all bodily reactions, whether in proteins, large molecules such as the DNA double helix, where genetic make-up is encoded, or cell organelles. We're examining how material works in the field of millionths of a millimeter.

Contact: Prof. Dr. Madhavi Krishnan
University of Zurich

Related biology technology :

1. Exotic particles, chilled and trapped, form giant matter wave
2. picoSpin-45 Miniature NMR Spectrometer Wins R&D 100 Award
3. SRI International Researchers Developing Bioadhesive Gel to Protect Women from HIV and HSV Infections
4. Researchers create highly conductive and elastic conductors using silver nanowires
5. Researchers create rubber-band electronics
6. Cedars-Sinai researchers, with stem cells and global colleagues, develop Huntingtons research tool
7. Penn researchers study of phase change materials could lead to better computer memory
8. Researchers tune the strain in graphene drumheads to create quantum dots
9. WHEATON® Introduces a New Web Community for Scientists, Researchers, and Biopharmaceutical Packagers
10. Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst to Welcome Cambridge University Researchers
11. Syracuse University researchers use nanotechnology to harness power of fireflies
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
A giant step in a miniature world: UZH researcher measures the electrical charge of nano particles
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... has launched Rosalind™, the first-ever genomics analysis platform specifically designed for life ... Named in honor of pioneering researcher Rosalind Franklin, who made a major ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... ... today it will be hosting a Webinar titled, “Pathology is going digital. Is ... , on digital pathology adoption best practices and how Proscia improves lab economics ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... Singh ... orphan drug designation to SBT-100, its novel anti-STAT3 (Signal Transducer and Activator of ... SBT-100 is able to cross the cell membrane and bind intracellular STAT3 and ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... research firm Parks Associates announced today that Tom Kerber ... Annual Meeting , October 11 in Scottsdale, Arizona . ... how smart safety and security products impact the competitive landscape. ... Parks Associates: Smart Home Devices: Main Purchase Driver ... "The residential security market has experienced continued growth, and the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:3/30/2017)... NEW YORK , March 30, 2017 ... by type (physiological and behavioral), by technology (fingerprint, AFIS, ... recognition, voice recognition, and others), by end use industry ... travel and immigration, financial and banking, and others), and ... Europe , Asia Pacific ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... The report "Video Surveillance Market ... Storage Devices), Software (Video Analytics, VMS), and Service (VSaaS, ... to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market was valued ... to reach USD 75.64 Billion by 2022, at a ... year considered for the study is 2016 and the ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... Controller General of Immigration from Maldives Mr. Mohamed Anwar and ... international IAIR Award for the most innovative high security ePassport and eGates  ... ... Maldives Immigration Controller General, Mr. Mohamed Anwar ... right) have received the IAIR award for the "Most innovative high security ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):