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News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

Ultrasensitive biosensor promising for medical diagnostics

• http://phys.org, by Emil Venere
 The device, which could be several hundred times more sensitive than other biosensors, combines the attributes of two distinctly different types of , said Muhammad A. Alam, a Purdue University professor of electrical and .

"Individually, both of these types of biosensors have limited sensitivity, but when you combine the two you get something that is better than either," he said.

Findings are detailed in a paper appearing Monday (May 14) in the . The paper was written by Purdue graduate student Ankit Jain, Alam and Pradeep R. Nair, a former Purdue doctoral student who is now a faculty member at the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay.

The device ╨ called a Flexure-FET - combines a mechanical sensor, which identifies a biomolecule based on its mass or size, with an electrical sensor that identifies molecules based on their electrical charge. The new sensor detects both charged and uncharged biomolecules, allowing a broader range of applications than either type of sensor alone.

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