Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Bubble wrap serves as sheet of tiny test tubes in resource-limited regions

Date:
July 16, 2014
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Popping the blisters on the bubble wrap might be the most enjoyable thing about moving. But now, scientists propose a more productive way to reuse the popular packing material -- as a sheet of small, test tube-like containers for medical and environmental samples. Their report shows that analyses can take place right in the bubbles.

Bubble wrap can serve as an inexpensive alternative to full-size test tubes.
Credit: American Chemical Society

Popping the blisters on the bubble wrap might be the most enjoyable thing about moving. But now, scientists propose a more productive way to reuse the popular packing material -- as a sheet of small, test tube-like containers for medical and environmental samples. Their report, which shows that analyses can take place right in the bubbles, appears in the ACS journal Analytical Chemistry.

George Whitesides and colleagues explain that although bubble wrap filled with biological samples, like blood or urine, or chemicals would have to be handled carefully, the material offers numerous advantages for those living in resource-limited areas. The material is available almost everywhere around the world, is inexpensive, doesn't generate sharp edges when broken (like glass containers), is easily disposed of by burning and is flexible. The interiors of the bubbles also are sterile, so there's no need for costly autoclaves that have to be plugged in -- a huge plus for the nearly 2 billion people around the world who do not have regular access to electricity.

To show that their idea could work, the team injected liquids into the air-filled pockets of bubble wrap with syringes and sealed the holes with nail hardener. They successfully ran anemia and diabetes tests on the liquids. They also could grow microbes such as E. coli in the blisters, which is important for detecting contamination in water samples. "The bubbles of bubble wrap, therefore, can be used for storing samples and performing analytical assays, a function that has the potential to be especially beneficial in resource-limited regions, and in very cost-sensitive applications," they conclude.

The authors acknowledge funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. David K. Bwambok, Dionysios C. Christodouleas, Stephen A. Morin, Heiko Lange, Scott T. Phillips, George M. Whitesides. Adaptive Use of Bubble Wrap for Storing Liquid Samples and Performing Analytical Assays. Analytical Chemistry, 2014; 140716083726003 DOI: 10.1021/ac501206m

Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Bubble wrap serves as sheet of tiny test tubes in resource-limited regions." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716112751.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2014, July 16). Bubble wrap serves as sheet of tiny test tubes in resource-limited regions. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716112751.htm
American Chemical Society. "Bubble wrap serves as sheet of tiny test tubes in resource-limited regions." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140716112751.htm (accessed September 22, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Monday, September 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

Raw: SpaceX Rocket Carries 3-D Printer to Space

AP (Sep. 22, 2014) — A SpaceX Rocket launched from Cape Canaveral, carrying a custom-built 3-D printer into space. NASA envisions astronauts one day using the printer to make their own spare parts. (Sept. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands March in NYC Over Climate Change

Thousands March in NYC Over Climate Change

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) — Accompanied by drumbeats, wearing costumes and carrying signs, thousands of demonstrators filled the streets of Manhattan and other cities around the world on Sunday to urge policy makers to take action on climate change. (Sept. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

What This MIT Sensor Could Mean For The Future Of Robotics

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) — MIT researchers developed a light-based sensor that gives robots 100 times the sensitivity of a human finger, allowing for "unprecedented dexterity." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
MIT BioSuit A New Take On Traditional Spacesuits

MIT BioSuit A New Take On Traditional Spacesuits

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) — The MIT BioSuit could be an alternative to big, bulky traditional spacesuits, but the concept needs some work. Video provided by Newsy
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