Turkeys inspire smartphone-capable early warning system for toxins

(Phys.org) —Some may think of turkeys as good for just lunch meat and holiday meals. But bioengineers at the University of California, Berkeley, saw inspiration in the big birds for a new type of biosensor that changes ...

Physicists create world's smallest semiconductor laser

Physicists at The University of Texas at Austin, in collaboration with colleagues in Taiwan and China, have developed the world's smallest semiconductor laser, a breakthrough for emerging photonic technology with applications ...

Ultrasensitive biosensor promising for medical diagnostics

(Phys.org) -- Researchers have created an ultrasensitive biosensor that could open up new opportunities for early detection of cancer and "personalized medicine" tailored to the specific biochemistry of individual patients.

A new paper made of graphene and protein fibrils

(Phys.org) -- Researchers led by Raffaele Mezzenga, a professor in Food and Soft Materials Science, have created a new nanocomposite made of graphene and protein fibrils: a special paper, which combines the best features ...

New biosensor microchip could speed up drug development

Stanford researchers have developed a new biosensor microchip that could significantly speed up the process of drug development. The microchips, packed with highly sensitive "nanosensors," analyze how proteins bind to one ...

Building biological computers

New research shows that genetically modified cells can be made to communicate with each other as if they were electronic circuits. The study is a groundbreaking step toward building complex systems where the body's own cells ...

See how they grow: Monitoring single bacteria without a microscope

(PhysOrg.com) -- With an invention that can be made from some of the same parts used in CD players, University of Michigan researchers have developed a way to measure the growth and drug susceptibility of individual bacterial ...

Nanoparticles Increase Intensity of Quantum Dots' Glow

(PhysOrg.com) -- Demonstration of precision DNA-based nanoassembly method for making light-emitting particle clusters could lead to advances in solar cells, optoelectronics, and biosensors

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A biosensor is a device for the detection of an analyte that combines a biological component with a physicochemical detector component.

It consists of 3 parts:

The most widespread example of a commercial biosensor is the blood glucose biosensor, which uses the enzyme glucose oxidase to break blood glucose down. In doing so it first oxidizes glucose and uses two electrons to reduce the FAD (a component of the enzyme) to FADH2. This in turn is oxidized by the electrode (accepting two electrons from the electrode) in a number of steps. The resulting current is a measure of the concentration of glucose. In this case, the electrode is the transducer and the enzyme is the biologically active component.

Recently, arrays of many different detector molecules have been applied in so called electronic nose devices, where the pattern of response from the detectors is used to fingerprint a substance. Current commercial electronic noses, however, do not use biological elements.

A canary in a cage, as used by miners to warn of gas could be considered a biosensor. Many of today's biosensor applications are similar, in that they use organisms which respond to toxic substances at a much lower level than us to warn us of their presence. Such devices can be used in environmental monitoring, trace gas detection and in water treatment facilities.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA