Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

MSI Reveals Invention For Detection And Precise Quantification Of Molecules

Date:
January 13, 2005
Source:
The Molecular Sciences Institute
Summary:
Researchers at The Molecular Sciences Institute revealed means for sensitive detection and precise quantification of arbitrarily designated molecules. The work is published in the current issue of Nature Methods.

Berkeley, CA - December 21, 2004 - Researchers at The Molecular Sciences Institute revealed means for sensitive detection and precise quantification of arbitrarily designated molecules. The work is published in the current issue of Nature Methods.

The Cover Article, entitled "Using protein-DNA chimeras to detect and count small numbers of molecules," describes "tadpole" molecules, and their use to detect and count small numbers of proteins and other molecules.

Detection and quantification methods based on these molecules have exquisite sensitivity, immense dynamic range, and unprecedented quantitative precision. These attributes should make the molecules useful for applications from diagnosis and assessment of human disease, to environmental monitoring, to detection of pathogens during an emerging infectious disease or a deliberate biological attack.

Methods based on these molecules are designed to work with the existing infrastructure of PCR machines, which are widely deployed and found most county public health departments in the United States.

According to Dr. Roger Brent, MSI Director and senior member of the team, "We called the molecules tadpoles because they consist of a protein head coupled to a DNA tail. The head binds the specific target molecule, while the DNA tail lets us count the number of target molecules."

Dr. Ian Burbulis, a researcher at MSI, devised the tadpole molecules and is the first author of the paper. According to Dr. Burbulis, "If you want to understand the mechanistic operation of biological systems, you need to know the precise numbers of each component part found in individual cells. Tadpoles and methods based on them should make that possible."

To count molecules so precisely, the researchers resorted to statistical methods sometimes used in high energy physics. The improved statistical techniques may be useful in other applications, such as management of therapy for HIV.

The work is funded by MSI's Alpha Project, its flagship effort to predict the future behavior of a prototype cellular system. The Alpha project is funded by the National Institutes of Health's National Human Genome Research Institute. In 2002, NHGRI named MSI a "Center of Excellence in Genomic Science," an acknowledgement of MSI's past and future research contributions in the field.

"This invention is almost a textbook example of how research into fundamental biology can spin off applications that might impact human health and safety in fairly short order," said Dr. Brent.

The invention is also described in an accompanying Nature Methods "News and Views" article by Stanford researcher Dr. Garry Nolan, who wrote that tadpoles may be an "appealing system for researchers wanting a standardized, high-throughput, and accurate detection system for... just about anything."

The Molecular Sciences Institute is an independent nonprofit research laboratory that combines genomic experimentation with computer modeling. Work at MSI aims to weave biology together with physics, engineering, computer science, and mathematics to enable precise, quantitative, prediction of the future behaviors of biological systems.

Nature Methods is a first-tier journal for new methods and significant improvements in life sciences and chemistry.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Molecular Sciences Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Molecular Sciences Institute. "MSI Reveals Invention For Detection And Precise Quantification Of Molecules." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 January 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050110115542.htm>.
The Molecular Sciences Institute. (2005, January 13). MSI Reveals Invention For Detection And Precise Quantification Of Molecules. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050110115542.htm
The Molecular Sciences Institute. "MSI Reveals Invention For Detection And Precise Quantification Of Molecules." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050110115542.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Matter & Energy News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming

The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming

AP (July 28, 2014) AP Investigation: As the Obama administration weans the country off dirty fuels, energy companies are ramping-up overseas coal exports at a heavy price. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Europe's Highest Train Turns 80 in French Pyrenees

Europe's Highest Train Turns 80 in French Pyrenees

AFP (July 25, 2014) Europe's highest train, the little train of Artouste in the French Pyrenees, celebrates its 80th birthday. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans

TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans

AP (July 24, 2014) TSA administrator, John Pistole's took part in the Aspen Security Forum 2014, where he answered questions on lifting of the ban on flights into Israel's Tel Aviv airport and whether politics played a role in lifting the ban. (July 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers

Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers

AP (July 24, 2014) Mobile phone companies and communities across the country are going to new lengths to disguise those unsightly cellphone towers. From a church bell tower to a flagpole, even a pencil, some towers are trying to make a point. (July 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins