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Proceedings Paper

Single-molecule electrophoresis: applications to biomolecular detection
Author(s): Alonso Castro; E. Brooks Shera
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Paper Abstract

A new method for the detection and identification of biological molecules at the single molecule level of sensitivity has been developed. The technique involves measuring the electrophoretic velocity of each molecule present in a sample. Since different chemical species generally exhibit different electrophoretic velocities, identification is accomplished by classification according to electrophoretic velocity. The solution is contained in a capillary to which an external voltage is applied, and the velocity is determined by measuring the time taken by an individual molecule to travel the distance between two tightly focused laser beams due to the electrophoretic effect. The detection of the migration of individual molecules through each laser beam was accomplished by a modified version of our recently developed technique of single fluorescent molecule detection. Monte Carlo computer simulations of the process were performed beforehand in order to estimate the experimental feasibility of the method, and to determine the optimum values for the various experimental parameters. The method has been applied to the analysis of single-fluorophore molecules such as rhodamine 6G, and to biological macromolecules, such as mixtures of nucleic acids and of proteins. Applications of the technique to the detection of specific DNA sequences are discussed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 3 April 1995
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 2386, Ultrasensitive Instrumentation for DNA Sequencing and Biochemical Diagnostics, (3 April 1995); doi: 10.1117/12.206010
Show Author Affiliations
Alonso Castro, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)
E. Brooks Shera, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 2386:
Ultrasensitive Instrumentation for DNA Sequencing and Biochemical Diagnostics
Gerald E. Cohn; Jeremy M. Lerner; Kevin J. Liddane; Alexander Scheeline; Steven A. Soper, Editor(s)

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