Aug 16, 2012
Nanoparticles rapidly assess specific IgE in plasma
Researchers at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, US, are developing technology for the rapid detection of allergy markers without leaving marks on a patient’s skin. The technology makes use of magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles coated with allergens (in this study, peanut protein).
The nanoparticles possess three major characteristics: 1) magnetism, which allows easy separation, 2) charge, which provides binding forces for ligands, and 3) high surface area for absorption.
The new detection method requires a small sample of body fluid and follows an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) format. According to the researchers, the method can detect the allergy in minutes with higher sensitivity and selectivity than the gold standard.
The technology is scalable for multi-allergy indicators, offers an inexpensive assay for point of care detection, is minimally invasive and straightforward to perform for healthcare providers.
Full details can be found in the journal Nanotechnology.
About the author
Yousef Haik is a professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.