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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S48110/01
Title: Single Molecule Sensing in Clinical Medicine
Principal Investigator: Birch, Professor D
Other Investigators:
Pickup, Professor J Rolinski, Dr OJ Smith, Professor WE
Wynne, Professor K Gnudi, Professor L Graham, Professor D
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Physics
Organisation: University of Strathclyde
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 December 2003 Ends: 31 May 2007 Value (£): 333,242
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Analytical Science Biological & Medicinal Chem.
Surfaces & Interfaces
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Chemicals Healthcare
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology
Related Grants:
GR/S48127/01
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
At present, diagnosis and monitoring in clinical biochemistry is based on measurement of average concentration, molecular form and bioactivity of ensembles of proteins and other macromolecules, thereby losing sensitivity and the ability to discriminate amongst the range and pattern of biomolecular diversity in pathology. For earlier diagnosis, ultrasensitive monitoring and breakthroughs in understanding the causes of many diseases we urgently need to develop clinical single molecule sensing. Applied to, for example, molecular structural changes in the universally fatal prion disorders of protein folding (BSE, CJD and possibly Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases), cancer proteins, and our first objective of single metabolite monitoring by sensing conformational changes in glucose metabolising enzymes for diabetes research, this new science has the potential to produce a quantum leap in the management of many patients and defies current concepts of molecular homogeneity in pathology. We propose clinical single molecule sensing might be accomplished by the fluorescence nanosecondlnanometre microscopy of single biomolecules. To try to achieve this we will fabricate novel molecular nanoenvironments, which allow control and perturbation of fluorescence by analytes and signals of interest and thereby push single molecule technioues and resolution to new boundaries. We can brina to this venture a truly multidisciolinarv team with a record of successful collaboration.
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Organisation Website: http://www.strath.ac.uk