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Using nanotechnology, UCF researchers have developed the first rapid detector for dopamine, a chemical that is believed to play a role in various diseases such as Parkinson's, depression and some cancers.
Studies show too much dopamine could be associated with some cancers, while low dopamine could be associated with Parkinson's disease and depression. The new technique developed at UCF requires only a few drops of blood, and results are available in minutes instead of hours because no separate lab is necessary to process the sample.
Technology - Study - Journal - Nano - Letters
The new technology was described in a recent study in the journal Nano Letters.
More than half a million people in the United States have Parkinson's and major episodes of depression affect about 16 million adults a year.
Methods - Dopamine - Time - Consuming - Preparation
Current methods to detect dopamine are time consuming, require rigorous sample preparation, including blood-plasma separation, as well as specialized laboratory equipment. With this device, however, a few drops of blood on a palm-sized, rectangular chip is all that is needed.
"A neurotransmitter like dopamine is an important chemical to monitor for our overall well-being so we can help screen out neural disorders like Parkinson's disease, various brain cancers, and monitor mental health," said Debashis Chanda, an associate professor in UCF's NanoScience Technology Center and the study's principle investigator. "We need to monitor dopamine so that we can...
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