Winter 2014


Health & Biology

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Novel Nanosensors

Chemists devise new mechanism to detect cell characteristics
Fall 2011

A structure-switching nanosensor made from DNA (blue and purple) detects a specific transcription factor (green). (Credit: Peter Allen)

A research team from the University of Rome Tor Vergata and UC Santa Barbara, including UCSB chemistry professors Kevin Plaxco and Norbert Reich and postdoctoral scholars Alexis Vallée-Bélisle and Andrew Bonham, created nanosensors that can detect specific proteins—called transcription factors —within cells. Based on natural biosensors, these new nanosensors provide an efficient means to analyze cell characteristics that could eventually lead to applications in cancer treatment and stem cell monitoring.

Nanosensors Made from DNA May Light Path to New Cancer Tests and Drugs (UCSB Office of Public Affairs) 9/7/11

'TF beacons' may light path to new cancer tests and drugs ( 9/7/11