The emergence and spread of infectious diseases (influenza, tuberculosis, MDR bacteria, MERS, SARS) has been a serious problem worldwide and are a major threat to human health, livestock industries, and the environment. There is a great need for the development of a rapid, accurate sensor platform with low cost and wide applicability as well as an easy assay procedure for diagnosis in the community in order to prevent the spread of infections. Also, a sensor platform that can screen through a large panel of pathogens to diagnose an infection of unknown origin is desired.
Extensive research on developing molecular diagnostics for infectious diseases are underway in Korea and worldwide. Genetic tests based on PCR technology have been commonly used in research laboratories and clinics due to their high sensitivity and wide applicability; however, automated systems have limitations in practice due to their high cost and large size, or allowing the detection of a single or few types of pathogens.
The advent of nanotechnology introduces the possibility to great advances in molecular diagnostics, allowing miniaturization, ultrasensitive and specific detection, reduced costs, and high-throughput and rapidness of the assay.
- Identification of biomarkers and mechanism studies for targeting microbial pathogens
- Nanomaterial synthesis, characterization, and biofunctionalization
- Fabrication of miniaturized sensor platform and methods for analysis
- Validation of sensor platforms for diagnosis and subsequent clinical decision-making
- Identified targets and biomarkers for diagnosis of bacterial and viral infections
- Synthesis of nanomaterial and nanosensor materials for ultrasensitive target detection
- Ultra-rapid microscale amplification technology for nucleic acid targets from microbial targets
- Integrated sensor platform for sample measurement and analysis