A new principle for rapid immunoassay of proteins based on in situ precipitate-enhanced ellipsometry. (1/770)

A new technique is presented that allows measurement of protein concentrations in the picomolar range with an assay time of only 10-20 min. The method is an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), but uses in-situ ellipsometric measurement of a precipitating enzyme product instead of the usual colorimetric detection of accumulating enzyme product in solution. Quantitative validation was obtained by use of annexin V, a protein with high binding affinity for phosphatidylserine-containing phospholipid membranes, resulting in a transport-limited adsorption rate. This property was exploited to obtain a range of low surface concentrations of annexin V by timed exposures of phospholipid bilayers to known concentrations of annexin V. Using polyvinylchloride (PVC)-coated and silanized silicon slides, various versions of this technique were used for the rapid assay of fatty acid-binding protein (FABP), a recently introduced early marker for acute myocardial infarction with a normal plasma concentration below 1 nmol/l, interleukin 6 (IL-6), a cytokine with normal plasma concentrations below 1 pmol/l, and again, annexin V. A possible future application of the method in the development of a one-step ELISA is discussed.  (+info)

Crystalline silica exposure, radiological silicosis, and lung cancer mortality in diatomaceous earth industry workers. (2/770)

BACKGROUND: The role of silicosis as either a necessary or incidental condition in silica associated lung cancer remains unresolved. To address this issue a cohort analysis of dose-response relations for crystalline silica and lung cancer mortality was conducted among diatomaceous earth workers classified according to the presence or absence of radiological silicosis. METHODS: Radiological silicosis was determined by median 1980 International Labour Organisation system readings of a panel of three "B" readers for 1809 of 2342 white male workers in a diatomaceous earth facility in California. Standardised mortality ratios (SMR) for lung cancer, based on United States rates for 1942-94, were calculated separately for workers with and without radiological silicosis according to cumulative exposures to respirable crystalline silica (milligrams per cubic meter x years; mg/m3-years) lagged 15 years. RESULTS: Eighty one cases of silicosis were identified, including 77 with small opacities of > or = 1/0 and four with large opacities. A slightly larger excess of lung cancer was found among the subjects with silicosis (SMR 1.57, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.43 to 4.03) than in workers without silicosis (SMR 1.19, 95% CI 0.87 to 1.57). An association between silica exposure and lung cancer risk was detected among those without silicosis; a statistically significant (p = 0.02) increasing trend of lung cancer risk was seen with cumulative exposure, with SMR reaching 2.40 (95% CI 1.24 to 4.20) at the highest exposure level (> or = 5.0 mg/m3-years). A similar statistically significant (p = 0.02) dose-response gradient was observed among non-silicotic subjects when follow up was truncated at 15 years after the final negative radiograph (SMR 2.96, 95% CI 1.19 to 6.08 at > or = 5.0 mg/m3-years), indicating that the association among non-silicotic subjects was unlikely to be accounted for by undetected radiological silicosis. CONCLUSIONS: The dose-response relation observed between cumulative exposure to respirable crystalline silica and lung cancer mortality among workers without radiological silicosis suggests that silicosis is not a necessary co-condition for silica related lung carcinogenesis. However, the relatively small number of silicosis cases in the cohort and the absence of radiographic data after employment limit interpretations.  (+info)

Chip-based genotyping by mass spectrometry. (3/770)

Silicon chips with immobilized target DNAs were used for accurate genotyping by mass spectrometry. Genomic DNAs were amplified with PCR, and the amplified products were covalently attached to chip wells via N-succinimidyl (4-iodoacetyl)aminobenzoate (SIAB) chemistry. Primer annealing, extension, and termination were performed on a 1-microl scale directly in the chip wells in parallel. Diagnostic products thus generated were detected in situ by using matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization mass spectrometry. This miniaturized method has the potential for accurate, high-throughput, low-cost identification of genetic variations.  (+info)

Thin film biosensor for rapid visual detection of nucleic acid targets. (4/770)

BACKGROUND: We have developed a silicon-based biosensor that generates a visual signal in response to nucleic acid targets. METHODS: In this system, capture oligonucleotide probes are immobilized on the surface of the biosensor. Interaction of the capture probes with a complementary target and a biotinylated detector oligonucleotide allows initiation of formation of an organic thin film on the biosensor. Thin film formation is completed by enzymatic activity of peroxidase conjugated to an anti-biotin antibody. Peroxidase catalyzes deposition of an insoluble product onto the silicon surface, generating a uniform thin film. The increased thickness on the surface alters the perceived color of the biosensor through changes in the interference patterns of reflected light from the surface, causing a color change from gold to purple. RESULTS: The biosensor results may be evaluated by direct visual inspection or quantified by ellipsometry. Results are obtained in 25 min with a detection limit of 5 pmol/L (150 amol/sample). Selectivity of the biosensor is demonstrated by discrimination of single nucleotide mismatches. Multitarget arrays are also analyzed with the thin film biosensor, and the system is capable of detecting targets from human serum and urine. CONCLUSIONS: The biosensor surface is inexpensive to produce, and the assay format is simple and rapid. The thin film biosensor is adaptable to a wide variety of nucleic acid detection applications, including rapid diagnostic testing for infectious disease panels, antibiotic resistance panels, or allelic discrimination of specific genetic markers.  (+info)

Stable five- and six-coordinated silicate anions in aqueous solution. (5/770)

Addition of aliphatic polyols to aqueous silicate solutions is shown to yield high concentrations of stable polyolate complexes containing five- or six-coordinated silicon. Coordinating polyols require at least four hydroxy groups, two of which must be in threo configuration, and coordinate to silicon via hydroxy oxygens at chain positions on either side of the threo pair. The remarkable ease by which these simple sugar-like molecules react to form hypervalent silicon complexes in aqueous solution supports a long-standing supposition that such species play a significant role in the biological uptake and transport of silicon and in mineral diagenesis.  (+info)

Patterned deposition of cells and proteins onto surfaces by using three-dimensional microfluidic systems. (6/770)

Three-dimensional microfluidic systems were fabricated and used to pattern proteins and mammalian cells on a planar substrate. The three-dimensional topology of the microfluidic network in the stamp makes this technique a versatile one with which to pattern multiple types of proteins and cells in complex, discontinuous structures on a surface. The channel structure, formed by the stamp when it is in contact with the surface of the substrate, limits migration and growth of cells in the channels. With the channel structure in contact with the surface, the cells stop dividing once they form a confluent layer. Removal of the stamp permits the cells to spread and divide.  (+info)

In situ self hardening bioactive composite for bone and dental surgery. (7/770)

A new biomaterial is presented which consists of a cellulose derivative--silanised hydroxyethylcellulose (HEC-SIL) and biphasic calcium phosphate (BCP). Rheological properties of the polymer itself and its mixture with BCP are pH-dependent. At pH 10-12 HEC-SIL is liquid and undergoes quick gellation at pH < 9. Similarly, the paste of HEC-SIL and BCP is fluid and injectable at higher pH and solidifies in biological solutions. The rate of this solidification can be easily controlled by the degree of substitution of hydroxyethylcellulose with silicoalkoxy groups.  (+info)

Oligomeric but not monomeric silica prevents aluminum absorption in humans. (8/770)

BACKGROUND: Soluble silica, a ubiquitous component of the diet, may be the natural ligand for dietary aluminum and may prevent its accumulation and toxicity in animals. However, previous studies on the inhibition of aluminum absorption and toxicity by soluble silica have produced conflicting results. We recently identified a soluble silica polymer, oligomeric silica, that has a much higher affinity for aluminum than does monomeric silica and that may be involved in the sequestration of aluminum. OBJECTIVE: By using (26)Al as a tracer, we investigated the effects of oligomeric and monomeric silica on the bioavailability of aluminum (study 1) and compared the availability of silicon from oligomeric and monomeric silica in the human gastrointestinal tract (study 2). DESIGN: In study 1, three healthy volunteers each ingested aluminum alone (control), aluminum with oligomeric silica (17 mg), and aluminum with monomeric silica (17 mg). In study 2, five healthy volunteers ingested both the oligomeric and monomeric forms of silica (34 mg). Serum and urine samples were analyzed for aluminum and silicon. RESULTS: Oligomeric silica reduced the availability of aluminum by 67% (P = 0.01) compared with the control, whereas monomeric silica had no effect (P = 0.40). Monomeric silica was readily taken up from the gastrointestinal tract and then excreted in urine (53%), whereas oligomeric silica was not detectably absorbed or excreted. CONCLUSIONS: The oligomeric, high-aluminum-affinity form of soluble silica reduces aluminum availability from the human gastrointestinal tract. Its potential role in the amelioration of aluminum toxicity in other biological systems requires attention.  (+info)