Providing new information about the little-understood evolution of the diversity of sizes and shapes in nature is a recent study identifying genetic differences between two closely related species of Nasonia wasps. Digging deeply, the research team identified the chromosomal location of “wing size” gene, the differences in DNA sequences of the genes, and the regulatory controls that govern the genes.
Carbon nanoparticles can be coated to make them attach to cancer cells, but getting them in the correct position can be difficult. A research team in Texas has magnetized nanoparticles so that they can be moved with a magnetic field. Administered using fiber optics, the method is non-destructive to healthy cells and carbon nanoparticles also fluoresce.
“Rolling” is a common mechanism cells use to navigate through the body. White blood cells, for example, roll along a blood vessel’s walls to reach inflamed areas. A team of biotechnology experts have invented a microfluidic device that uses this natural cell-rolling mechanism to sort cells. The device features tiny channels coated with sticky molecules that bind weakly with certain cells, forcing them to roll into a different spot.
Cellulose is synthesized in a semi-crystalline state that is essential for its function in a plant’s cell wall, but the mechanisms controlling its crystallinity are poorly understood. New Carnegie Institution research not only reveals key information about this process, but also a means to reduce cellulose crystallinity, a key stumbling block in biofuels development.
Based on Bruker Optic's existing Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectrometry platform, a new ALPHA Wine Analyzer has been introduced that can perform simultaneous analysis of different parameters with a single measurement. As described in a short white paper, Bruker Optics' new instrument uses attenuated total reflection to determine at least 14 wine parameters without sample preparation or reagent use.
The study of enzyme catalysis requires instrumentation that can acquire spectra quickly. At Bruker Optics, the development of UltraScan linear air bearing scanning with specialized alignment technology and fast 320 kHz mirror velocity was specifically designed to accommodate kinetic studies such as the catalysis of ?-chymotrypsin, a commonly studied mammalian digestive enzyme. A recent white paper discusses this application using a Vertex 80 Fourier transform infrared spectrometer.
Thermogravimetric (TG) analysis follows changes in sample mass as a function of temperature and time. This technique supplies detailed information on sample composition and decomposition, but to identify the specific gases released during thermal treatment, a spectroscopic method is required. As detailed in a recent Bruker Optics white paper, a Fourier transform infrared spectrometer from Bruker Optics has been joined with a TG analyzer from Netzsch Thermal Analysis to provide comprehensive outgassing analysis and more.
In cooperation with Pfizer, Bruker Optics has developed the TANDEM system, a manufacturing process monitoring solution for tablet analysis that combines on-line near-infrared (NIR) content uniformity with conventional tablet testing based on weight, thickness, hardness, and diameter. The methodology, prompted by a recent process technology initiative by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, is described in a recent white paper from Bruker.
Modern process analytical technologies (PAT), a recent initiative of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, are helping to move pharmaceutical manufactures to more scientifically rigorous production monitoring standards. Bruker Optics has developed methods to use near-infrared (NIR) analysis to meet these standards, and in a recent white paper details how a MATRIX-F instrument can determine moisture/solvent content during the common practice of drying powder in a fluid bed.
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has been introducing manufacturing control practices that encourage pharmaceutical makers to move away from empirical standards. One example of this push for quantified process monitoring is crystallization, a process crucial in drug production. A Bruker Optics white paper describes how this can be done scientifically using a MATRIX-F spectrometer.
The recent addition in recent years of focal plane array detectors to Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectrometers has allowed the instrument to obtain much richer spectra, up to 16,000 pixels/spectra simultaneously. The heightened capabilities have positioned FT-IR to assume a greater role in a variety of laboratory imaging tasks traditionally reserve for conventional microscopes. A new white paper from Bruker Optics describes some of these applications.
Proteins have become more important as active drugs in pharmaceuticals, such as therapeutic antibodies, and in the course of development the conformational changes of proteins and peptides must be determined. Typically, size-exclusion chromatography or circular dichroism spectroscopy is used for the prediction of the protein secondary structure, but, as described in a recent white paper from Bruker Optics, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy is much faster, acquiring information within one minute.
An international team led by evolutionary biologist and Rutgers University professor Debashish Bhattacharya has shed light on the early events leading to photosynthesis. In sequencing the 70 million base pair nuclear genome of the ancient one-celled alga Cyanophora , the team was able to trace the origin of the underlying mechanics of photosynthesis further than ever before.
The TRR 61 project has been keeping about 150 scientists in Germany and China busy since 2008. The goal is to understand how large natural systems, such as biorganisms are assembled from numerous diverse small molecular structures. The first papers from the first stage of the project, which looks at self-assembly mechanisms, have recently been published.
X-ray crystallography has become crucial to modern biological imaging, but large single crystals for high-quality data acquisition are difficult to grow. Plus, radiation damages delicate samples. A new technique, femtosecond diffraction imaging, could solve both problems at once and still deliver high-quality images.
Infrared spectroscopy has been used in combination with traditional microscopy for more than 25 years, but has always been extremely time-consuming, requiring hours to resolve a sample area less than one square millimeter. The addition of multi-element detectors, along with Fourier transform technology, as described in a recent Bruker Optics white paper, enables a detection to assess all points on an image simultaneously, saving considerable time.
Labeling requirements for fats and oils under U.S. Food & Drug Administration guidelines are stringent. Values for iodine, free fatty acids, anisidine value, and even trans fatty acids are all mandatory. According to a recent white paper from Bruker Optics, the traditional analyses for these substances are designed for just one specific parameter and tend to be tedious. Near-infrared (NIR) spectrometry can identify multiple components with a single, fast measurement.
High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) is the most widely used method for monitoring industrial-scale fermentation. But HPLC requires a lot of time, a high degree of skill, and can be expensive in the long-term. In addition, it can only analyze soluble components. Near-infrared (NIR) spectrometry, as detailed in a Bruker Optics white paper, can perform the same analysis with no waste and much greater speed.
Because of both strict government specification and tax rates, distillers must be sure their finished products contain the correct alcohol content. Near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy solutions from Bruker Optics, as detailed in a recent white paper, can ease this common bottleneck for laboratory analysis, which typically involves the time-consuming and potentially inaccurate density meter analyzer method.
The largest expense to a distillery or a fuel ethanol plant, corn's value is highly contingent on its quality, especially with regard to moisture. However, the grain goes largely unmonitored through both industries. A new white paper from Bruker Optics details the steps by which near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy can be used to quickly identify and verify moisture targets for corn grain, as well other important metrics such as oil content.
International NIR Global Operating Technologies (INGOT) is a set of universal near-infrared (NIR) calibrations for the analysis of raw materials and finished products in the feed industry. A new white paper from Bruker Optics details how INGOT packages for Bruker's MPA and Matrix-I Fourier transform NIR (FT-NIR) spectrometers can be used to optimize recipes and account for parameters such as moisture, oil, protein, fiber, and ash.
Building calibration data takes effort, which is why many laboratories stay with older monochromator-based near-infrared (NIR) instruments instead of upgrading to more accurate Fourier transform-based systems (FT-NIR). A recent white paper from Bruker Optics details the possibility of transferring old calibrations from a monochromator system to an FT-NIR system such as Bruker's MPA.
Bruker Optics has published a method for on-line monitoring of edible fats and oils. Iodine value is important to these substances because it affects the viscosity and susceptibility to oxidation. Performed by a Fourier transform near-infrared spectrometer coupled with specially designed fiber optic probes, the methodology described in a recent Bruker Optics white paper speeds up analysis, reduces production down time, and achieves product consistency.
Plant and computer scientists can now study the underground world of plants with more accuracy and clarity thanks to the adaption of X-ray micro computed tomography (micro-CT). The method has been used in the U.K. to examine the shape and branching patterns of roots in soil. The new technique should improve the chances of breeding better crop varieties and increasing yields.
Biosensors used in medical diagnostics are typically very specific, detecting within a fixed dynamic ranges. Researchers recently designed a new type of biosensor that copies nature’s approach, which is to employ many different sensors all looking for a common target over a wide range.