Biotechnology

A Particulate Sandwich

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Science  06 Jun 2008:
Vol. 320, Issue 5881, pp. 1263
DOI: 10.1126/science.320.5881.1263b

Using a highly sensitive procedure for the detection of proteins, Kim et al. report an enhanced diagnostic test for the presence of HIV in human plasma. In their approach, the HIV p24 Gag protein was trapped between magnetic microparticles, which had been functionalized with sheep antibodies to p24, and gold nanoparticles, which had been decorated with a mix of mouse antibodies directed against p24 or a DNA bar code. The microparticles were then removed from solution magnetically, and the associated DNA was quantified. The sensitivity of this method was an order of magnitude greater than that of standard enzyme-linked immunoassays; the particle-based analysis was performed in solution, which allowed for homogeneous mixing and improved binding kinetics. Furthermore, careful design of the peptides used to raise the mouse and sheep antibodies enabled detection of the six most prevalent HIV subtypes. — BJ

Nanomedicine 3, 293 (2008).

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