[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We developed an extendable open-source Loop-mediated isothermal AMPlification (LAMP) signature design program called LAVA (LAMP Assay Versatile Analysis). LAVA was created in response to limitations of existing LAMP signature programs.
LAVA identifies combinations of six primer regions for basic LAMP signatures, or combinations of eight primer regions for LAMP signatures with loop primers, which can be used as LAMP signatures. The identified primers are conserved among target organism sequences. Primer combinations are optimized based on lengths, melting temperatures, and spacing among primer sites. We compare LAMP signature candidates for Staphylococcus aureus created both by LAVA and by PrimerExplorer. We also include signatures from a sample run targeting all strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
We have designed and demonstrated new software for identifying signature candidates appropriate for LAMP assays. The software is available for download at http://lava-dna.googlecode.com/.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present a fully automated DNA purification module comprised of a micro-fabricated chip and sequential injection analysis system that is designed for use within autonomous instruments that continuously monitor the environment for the presence of biological threat agents. The chip has an elliptical flow channel containing a bed (3.5 x 3.5 mm) of silica-coated pillars with height, width and center-to-center spacing of 200, 15, and 30 microm, respectively, which provides a relatively large surface area (ca. 3 cm(2)) for DNA capture in the presence of chaotropic agents. We have characterized the effect of various fluidic parameters on extraction performance, including sample input volume, capture flow rate, and elution volume. The flow-through design made the pillar chip completely reusable; carryover was eliminated by flushing lines with sodium hypochlorite and deionized water between assays. A mass balance was conducted to determine the fate of input DNA not recovered in the eluent. The device was capable of purifying and recovering Bacillus anthracis genomic DNA (input masses from 0.32 to 320 pg) from spiked environmental aerosol samples, for subsequent analysis using polymerase chain reaction-based assays.
The Analyst 03/2008; 133(2):248-55. · 3.97 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have developed and tested a fully autonomous pathogen detection system (APDS) capable of continuously monitoring the environment for airborne biological threat agents. The system was developed to provide early warning to civilians in the event of a bioterrorism incident and can be used at high profile events for short-term, intensive monitoring or in major public buildings or transportation nodes for long-term monitoring. The APDS is completely automated, offering continuous aerosol sampling, in-line sample preparation fluidics, multiplexed detection and identification immunoassays, and nucleic acid-based polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification and detection. Highly multiplexed antibody-based and duplex nucleic acid-based assays are combined to reduce false positives to a very low level, lower reagent costs, and significantly expand the detection capabilities of this biosensor. This article provides an overview of the current design and operation of the APDS. Certain sub-components of the ADPS are described in detail, including the aerosol collector, the automated sample preparation module that performs multiplexed immunoassays with confirmatory PCR, and the data monitoring and communications system. Data obtained from an APDS that operated continuously for 7 days in a major U.S. transportation hub is reported.
Biosensors and Bioelectronics 05/2005; 20(10):1925-31. · 5.44 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The autonomous pathogen detection system (APDS) is an automated, podium-sized instrument that continuously monitors the air for biological threat agents (bacteria, viruses, and toxins). The system has been developed to warn of a biological attack in critical or high-traffic facilities and at special events. The APDS performs continuous aerosol collection, sample preparation, and detection using multiplexed immunoassay followed by confirmatory PCR using real-time TaqMan assays. We have integrated completely reusable flow-through devices that perform DNA extraction and PCR amplification. The fully integrated system was challenged with aerosolized Bacillus anthracis, Yersinia pestis, Bacillus globigii, and botulinum toxoid. By coupling highly selective antibody- and DNA-based assays, the probability of an APDS reporting a false positive is extremely low.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An automated sample preparation module, based upon sequential injection analysis (SIA), has been developed for use within an autonomous pathogen detection system. The SIA system interfaced aerosol sampling with multiplexed microsphere immunoassay-flow cytometric detection. Metering and sequestering of microspheres using SIA was found to be reproducible and reliable, over 24-h periods of autonomous operation. Four inbuilt immunoassay controls showed excellent immunoassay and system stability over five days of unattended continuous operation. Titration curves for two biological warfare agents, Bacillus anthracis and Yersinia pestis, obtained using the automated SIA procedure were shown to be similar to those generated using a manual microtiter plate procedure.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A method of detecting real events by obtaining a set of recent signal results, calculating measures of the noise or variation based on the set of recent signal results, calculating an expected baseline value based on the set of recent signal results, determining sample deviation, calculating an allowable deviation by multiplying the sample deviation by a threshold factor, setting an alarm threshold from the baseline value plus or minus the allowable deviation, and determining whether the signal results exceed the alarm threshold.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A dispensing system delivers a precise amount of fluid for biological or chemical processing and/or analysis. Dispensing means moves the fluid. The dispensing means is operated by a pneumatic force. Connection means delivers the fluid to the desired location. An actuator means provides the pneumatic force to the dispensing means. Valving means transmits the pneumatic force from the actuator means to the dispensing means.