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News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

Ultrasensitive biosensor promising for medical diagnostics

•, 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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