Microarray for Complex Chemotyping
2014 R&D 100 Winner
Whether the application is biofuels, microbial ecological investigation or medical research, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Berkeley Lab Multiplex Chemotyping Microarray (MCM) has proven to be the most powerful and precise system for investigations of biomass at the molecular level. MCM performs rapid chemical analyses of prospective biofuel crops and microbial communities by combining high-throughput micro-contact printing technology with high-fidelity vibrational spectroscopy and mass spectrometry. Its ability to rapidly identify the chemical composition and biological function in plant and animal cells is unparalleled, as it can run up to 1,024 samples in 5 sec, compared with just a few samples in the same period of time for competing technologies such as silicon microarray or UV-Vis spectrometry. Multiplexing capabilities enable a throughput rate more than two-orders-of-magnitude beyond existing methods, and precise deposition allows accurate detection of multiple chemicals within each sample. Samples can include plant particles, airborne particulates, soil particles or microbes with sample volumes down to 10 pL; and mixtures of proteins or heterogeneous biomolecules with dimensions smaller than 50 nm.
In biofuels applications, the MCM allows researchers to begin determining how specific genes control cell-wall composition. In microbial community screening in medical research, MCM’s discovery of the deep structure of fibrous protein aggregates have made MCM an essential part of the overall strategy for neutralizing the HIV infection.
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
|Lawrence Berkeley National Labroatory's Berkeley Lab Multiplex Chemotyping Microarray (MCM) development team (l-r): Giovanni Birarda, Hoi-Ying Homan, Sun Choi and Liang Chen.|
The Berkeley Lab Multiplex Chemotyping Microarray (MCM) Development Team from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Hoi-Ying Holman, Principal Developer, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory