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Hello, I'm Dr. Edgar
Goluch from the Department
of Chemical Engineering
at Northeastern University
in Boston, Massachusetts.
And today, I'll be telling you
about nanosensors for determining
the presence of bacteria.
My research group works on
a number of topics related
to bacterial cells and
we're primarily focused
on developing sensing and fluidic
systems to detect and examine both
individual cells and biofilms.
Today, I'll be focusing on two types
of devices that we're developing.
First, we'll talk about
and how they're made and how we're
applying them for early infection
detection and then
secondly, we'll talk
about some microfluidic
devices that you
can use to isolate and cultivate
microorganisms, as well as
detect the presence of infections.
So to begin with, let's look at some
nanoscale electrochemical sensors.
The reason why we're interested
in these types of sensors
is to look at small molecules
that bacteria and all cells
produce and excrete
into their environment.
So you might be familiar with
neurons, for example, releasing
dopamine, serotonin, and
into their local environment
for the other cells
to respond to and collect.
Bacteria do something very similar.
They communicate with each other
both through the same species
and to other species to coordinate
their activities, to determine when
to form biofilms, when
to release toxins,
or when to move to new locations
when they're being attacked
or when food sources run out.
All of this is done
with small molecule
communications which can be detected
using electrochemical sensors.