Capture hidden pathogens with nanoparticles

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They use nanotechnology to capture hidden pathogens

Researchers at the University of Central Florida have developed a novel technique that could provide clinicians with a faster and more sensitive tool for detecting pathogens associated with inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn's disease.

The new nanoparticle-based technique can also be used for the detection of other microbes that have challenged scientists for centuries because they hide deep in human tissue and are capable of reprogramming cells to successfully evade the immune system.

The germs reappear years later and can cause serious health problems, as seen in cases of tuberculosis. There are currently testing methods to find these hidden microbes, but they take a long time to complete and often delay effective treatment for weeks or even months.

UCF Associate Professor J. Manuel Pérez and Professor Saleh Naser and their research team have developed a method that uses nanoparticles coated with specific DNA markers for elusive pathogens. The technique is effective and more accurate than current methods, detecting even small amounts of a pathogen. More importantly, it takes hours rather than weeks or months to deliver results, providing physicians with a faster tool to help patients. The group's research work has recently been published in the journal PLoS ONE.

Source: Science Daily

Video: What is nanotechnology?


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