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Molecular Sensing

Sensors based on nanopores show promises

Biomarkers are molecules that offer a measurable indicator of some biological state or condition. The presence of biomarkers in biological samples is used to monitor pathogenic processes. Using nanopore is advantageous because they do not require chemical labelling or complex optics thus allowing easy integration in low-cost, portable and wearable devices.

In collaboration with Oxford Nanopore Technology, we are currently developing a nanopore based technology for high-throughput sensing of biomarkers.

  • Metabolite Recognition with Protein Adaptors

Metabolites are small molecules that are products of metabolism and are an important class of biomarkers. Proteins can be integrated inside a nanopore and the binding of ligands can be observed by the specific modulation of the ionic current. Metabolites can be identified directly from picoliter blood samples, sweat and other biological liquids. We are testing the incorporation of many proteins that bind to a variety of metabolites.

  • Nanofilters for protein biomarkers

Many biomarkers are proteins. Protein biomarkers are recognised by their specific ionic current signature (e.g. thrombin in green and GFP in blue) and quantified by the frequency of the blockades. One of the main challenges is to detect low abundance proteins in a biological sample. We are investigating several methods to selectively recognize a protein biomarker. In one example below, a layer of DNA aptamers was chemically attached to the nanopore to allow selective capture of cognate analyses.

Our Publications

  • Zernia S, van der Heide, Galenkamp N, Gouridis G. Maglia G. Blockades of Proteins Inside Nanopores for Real-Time Metabolome Analysis. ACS Nano. (2020)

  • Willems K, Ruić D, Biesemans A, Galenkamp N, Van Dorpe, P, Maglia G. Engineering and Modeling the Electrophoretic Trapping of a Single Protein Inside a Nanopore. ACS Nano. (2019)

  • Galenkamp N.S, Soskine M, Wloka C,, and Maglia G. Direct electrical quantification of glucose and asparagine from bodily fluids using nanopores. Nature Commun. (2018) Oct 5. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-01006-4-Eurekalert - Sciencelinx - PhysOrg - Science News - Science Daily - Canada News - LongRoom - GEN - R&D - Infosurhoy - Bionity - Health Innovations - Bioanalysis - Kennislink - Chemistry World - LabMedica

  • Van Meervelt V, Soskine M, Singh S, Schuurman-Wolters G, Wijma HJ, Poolman B, and Maglia G. Real-time conformational changes and controlled orientation of native proteins inside a protein nanoreactor. J Am Chem Soc. (2017) Dec 27;139(51):18640-18646. doi: 10.1021/jacs.7b10106. PDF

  • Willems K, Van Meervelt V, Wloka C, and Maglia G. Single-molecule nanopore enzymology. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. (2017) Aug 5;372(1726). pii: 20160230. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0230. PDF

  • Soskine M, Biesemans A, Maglia G. Single-Molecule Analyte Recognition with ClyA Nanopores Equipped with Internal Protein Adaptors. J Am Chem Soc. 6;137(17):5793-7 (2015). DOI: 10.1021/jacs.5b01520.

  • Van Meervelt V, ​Soskine M, and Maglia G. Detection of two isomeric binding configurations in a protein-aptamer complex with a biological nanopore. ACS Nano Dec 23;8(12):12826-35 (2014). DOI: 10.1021/nn506077e.

  • Soskine, M, Biesemans, A, Moeyaert, B, Cheley, S, Bayley, H., and Maglia, G. An engineered ClyA nanopore detects folded target proteins by selective external association and pore entry. Nano Lett 2(9):4895-900 (2012). DOI

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