build molecular structures that exhibit specific properties such as rigidity, electric conductivity, or porosity. Building these structures without bricks and mortar is no easy task. Instead, we use synthetic chemistry to create new building blocks and take advantage of favorable interactions between these molecules to produce new assemblies. Porphyrins are naturally occurring molecules necessary for oxygenation of human blood and plant photosynthesis. By modifying the porphyrin scaffold we hope to be able to link many of these units together in one, two, and three dimensions.
This proposed research project is to develop and validate a method based on Capillary electrophoresis coupled with mass spectrometry to analyze amphetamine, methamphetamine, methylenedioxy-amphetamine, methylenedioxy-methamphetamine, and methylenedioxyethylamphetamine in real samples of drug seizures and natural weight loss pills, by first getting a basic understanding of CE-MS/MS technique and then applying it.
The therapeutic effect of a vaccine depends on its chemical composition, and in particular the integrity of its protein components. Conditions under which a vaccine is manufactured and stored can damage the proteins it contains; however, since proteins are structurally complex and reactive, their degradation during routine handling is unpredictable. In the project described here, three candidate vaccine products will be subjected to models of manufacture and storage in order to induce chemical changes within them in a controlled manner.
In order to enhance the capabilities of fuel cell test stations, a new tool for fuel cell diagnostics based on nonlinear frequency response analysis (NFRA) will be developed. NFRA applies a perturbation of the operating current and measures the voltage response of the cell. By varying the frequency of the perturbation, processes with different dynamics (i.e. fast or slow processes) are excited and can be probed individually. From this frequency response, the state of the cell can be determined.
One of the goals of modern bioanalytical chemistry is the simultaneous (multiplexed) detection of multiple biomarkers in individual cells. Biomarkers are defined as characteristic proteins, genes, or small molecules that can be measured and evaluated as indicators of normal biological or pathological state of a cell. Mass cytometry is a recently developed technique developed by Fluidigm Inc to detect multiple biomarkers. Detecting fewer number of biomarker copies is essential because we can identify for instance a cancer causing biomarker at an early stage.
The current approach for testing compounds of interest in blood such as drugs or nutrients involves drawing blood samples into vials that then require refrigeration prior to testing. Since transportation to remote laboratories is challenging, people need to go into medical labs to have their blood tested. This research will develop improved techniques that enable blood samples to be collected from a finger prick onto a specially designed card that eliminates biohazards and makes the sample stable at room temperature so that it could be mailed or sent by courier to a lab.
Current commercially available dental resin composites use the monomer BisGMA that uses a toxic bisphenol A (BPA) as the starting material, causing potential environmental and health problems. We aim at replacing BPA with bile acids, natural compounds in the new synthesis of new dental monomers. We are also making new inorganic fillers that provide the strength of the material. The latter is the area of expertise of our collaborators at Donghua University.
The successful commercialization of the automotive fuel cell requires lowering costs of key components in the fuel cell stack, such as the catalyst materials at the centre of the electrochemical cell generating the energy. Nanoparticles of platinum supported on mesoporous carbons are typical materials being used for the current generation of the fuel cell stack. To meet the cost targets for commercialization we must be able to design catalysts that can increase their activity, be used more effectively, and last the lifetime of the fuel cell car.
Recently we have demonstrated that multicore-shell nanoparticles, made of cadmium telluride and zinc oxide, have great potential to be applied into the field of renewable energies due to the ability to split water into H+ and · OH upon irradiation of visible light. Herein we originally propose the utilization of those nanoparticles for a new lightassisted cancer therapy, that is, photogenerated · OH can lead to the DNA damage of of cells.
The proposed project focuses on the research & development of efficient electrode materials for use in an electrochemical process that produces high-value chemicals for use in a variety of industrial applications. As an electrochemical process, significant portions of the production costs are attributable to electrical power consumption; therefore, improvements in energetic efficiency would result in appreciable reductions in production costs.