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New Multi-functional Sensing Tool To Investigate Cystic Fibrosis

one out of every 2,500 people in the United States.

Using epithelial cell cultures from Emory, the Georgia Tech researchers have demonstrated that their multi-functional biosensors work at the live-cell surface during in vitro studies.

“Before you can identify what triggers the ATP release, we must be able to quantitatively measure the released species at the cell surface,” Mizaikoff said, noting that many pathological events involve the disruption of chemical communication and molecular signaling between cells, especially in the nervous system, lungs and kidneys.

Improved understanding of cellular communication can lead to new strategies for treating diseases, Mizaikoff added: “Being able to operate sensors in an electrochemical imaging mode at the micro- and nanoscale is an exciting opportunity for complementing optical imaging techniques. There are many clinical research problems that these biosensors can help with.”

During the same ACS session, the Georgia Tech team will also present findings of a related project.

A collaboration with Estelle Gauda at Johns Hopkins University and also supported by NIH grants, this project monitors ATP release at the carotid body. (The carotid body is a chemoreceptor that, among other functions, monitors oxygen content in the blood and helps control respiration.)

Chronic oxygen stress – too much or too little oxygen during early postnatal development – can lead to a deficiency in the amount of oxygen reaching body tissues in premature infants and newborn animals. But little is known about how oxygen stress affects regulatory networks and alters chemoreceptors. To gain insights, the Georgia Tech researchers will study ATP, which is among the signaling molecules released by the carotid body.

Researchers incorporate the same technology used for the multi-functional scanning probe. For this study, however, they have tailored the biosensor to work at
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