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Arlington Heights, TX, United States

Grant
Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 500.00K | Year: 2007

This Small Business Inovation Research (SBIR) Phase II research project applies a new sensor principle to develop commercial High-Throughput Screening (HTS) systems for drug-development applications. The advantages of the Guided-Mode Resonance (GMR) sensor concept for such applications reside in its inherent physical characteristics including polarization diversity, materials independence, choice of spectral regions, angular-addressing flexibility, and associated compact system configurations. These properties enable tag-free sensor technology with high sensitivity, high accuracy, and multi-parameter detection. A major objective is the development and verification of GMR-sensor HTS commercial system prototypes in standard formats. Integrated analysis software will present data on biomolecular binding events, including background density and molecular accumulation dynamics, to the user. An additional main thrust is the development of attachment chemistry and methods for sensor activation where a set of protocols and processes for example measurands will be optimized to maximize detection sensitivity. Finally, by applying transmission sensor formats with shaped input light beams and integrated detector matrices, the next-generation compact system designs for massively parallel screening of drug compounds will be provided. This research project will stimulate progress in drug discovery. Guided-mode resonance sensors operate without chemical tags permitting observation and study of unperturbed biochemical processes, as no foreign substance is introduced. Therefore, these sensors provide enhanced understanding of chemical and biomolecular reactions and may lead to advances in chemical process development and drug discovery and design. Moreover, this class of biosensors has other potential applications including medical diagnostics, proteomics, genomics, environmental monitoring, and homeland security. Application of this technology to microfluidics, lab-on-a-chip, and wireless integrated sensors for homeland security and environmental monitoring may provide new tools for accurate and cost-effective detection of biotoxins, explosives, and hazardous materials.


Grant
Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2007

This Small Business Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I research project aims to develop a new class of biosensors based on the guided-mode resonance effect in thin periodic films to monitor complete biochemical binding events without foreign tags. The fact that the resonant sensors operate without chemical tags permits observation and study of unperturbed biochemical processes, as no foreign substance needs to be introduced. Therefore, these sensors can provide enhanced understanding of chemical and bio-molecular processes and may lead to advances in chemical process development, drug discovery, and defense applications. The new class of sensors proposed could have high impact on areas such as medical diagnostics, drug development, proteomics, genomics, environmental monitoring, and homeland security."


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.00K | Year: 2010

The objective of this work is development of a new sensor system to rapidly detect and diagnose biological threats to the public, including microbial and toxic agents. A unique, new photonic resonance sensor concept implemented with subwavelength waveguide gratings is applied to monitor each detection event in real-time. Due to inherent polarization diversity, multiple resonance peaks shift their positions in angle when a bioreaction occurs, thereby providing cross-referenced data and protection against false positives. This label-free technology can be applied in complex biological samples, such as food products and water sources. It does not require extensive processing steps, thus simplifying assay tests and enabling a rapid response. The biochip detection system connects to portable computer interfaces for data acquisition and analysis by dedicated software codes. The research proposed will accomplish design, fabrication, testing, and verification of a prototype sensor for microbial and toxic agents. Commercial applicability of the technology is high relative to competing products. The basic sensor can be fashioned into ultra compact, dense arrays for simultaneous monitoring of multiple biological species as planned for Phase II.

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