One telecommunications engineer of NUP/UPNA-Public University of Navarre Mr. Abián Bentor Socorro-Leránoz, has developed optical resonance-based biosensors for use in healthcare applications such as the detection of coeliac disease. Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disorder of the small intestine that occurs in genetically predisposed people of all ages from middle infancy onward. Symptoms include pain and discomfort in the digestive tract, chronic constipation, and diarrhea, failure to thrive (in children), anaemia and fatigue.
Apart from achieving greater resolution and sensitivity, the components used in these devices are much less costly and more versatile than the ones made use of in present technologies. Optical bio-sensors could provide a prospective alternative in the design of biomedical sensors. Current bio-sensors use mainly gold and noble metals that makes them costly.
A biosensor is an instrument that uses biological molecules (bio-receptors) to detect other biological or chemical substances. In this thesis, the bio-receptors are antibodies, biological molecules that the body produces particularly to fight off antigens. An antigen is a substance foreign to the human body our immune technique recognizes it as a threat, and in the presence of it, the physique reacts by making antibodies to recognize and neutralize it. What is additional, the biosensor is made up of a substrate where the physical phenomenon that translates the biological reactions into intelligible details takes the spot, and the immobilization layer, which causes the antibodies to turn out to be attached to the substrate.
The author of the thesis says that a single of the exclusive functions is that the substrate used is silicon waveguides on which distinct kind of resonance is generated. The biosensors are primarily based on the movement of the wavelength of the resonances generated on the basis of the number of antigens detected. When the antibodies come with each other with the antigens, there is a minimum change in the wavelength that our biosensors are capable of picking up. This is attainable thanks to the resolution achieved by these biosensors and their sensitivity, which enables us to see how a great deal resonances shift on the wavelength as the antibody-antigen hyperlinks increase.
The operations carried out by Abián Socorro is geared toward healthcare applications. The more antigens that are detected in the sample, the more advanced is the illness. If patients are in an early or late phase, they will have few antigens and few antibodies, so the resonance will move toward wavelengths closer to the reference ones. If the phase is additionally advanced, the concentrations detected will be higher, so the resonance will adjust a lot in the wavelength.
The technologies applied is primarily based on LMRs, lossy mode resonances, in which the Sensors Laboratory of the NUP/UPNA-Public University of Navarre is a pioneer. “This technology has shown itself to be a possible competitor of the one particular based on SPRS (surface plasmon resonances) which at present dominates most biosensor applications”.
This operate is about optimizing the parameters of the optical waveguides made use of to create resonances that offer the maximum attainable resolution and sensitivity, a critical aspect in the field of biosensors. The investigation conducted has resulted in two awards at the international conferences Trends in Nanotechnology 2012 and Optical Fibre Sensors 2014. In the latter conference, the bio-sensor was designed to detect coeliac illness and when compared with the usual values in the clinical environment succeeded in decreasing the concentration of antibodies detected to diagnose this disorder.