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Proceedings Paper

THz absorption signature detection of genetic material of E. coli and B. subtilis
Author(s): Alexei Bykhovski; Xiaowei Li; Tatiana Globus; Tatyana Khromova; Boris Gelmont; Dwight Woolard; Alan C. Samuels; James O. Jensen
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Paper Abstract

The development of efficient biological agent detection techniques requires in-depth understanding of THz absorption spectral features of different cell components. Chromosomal DNA, RNAs, proteins, bacterial cell wall, proteinaceous coat might be essential for bacterial cells and spores THz signature. As a first step, the DNA's contribution into entire cell THz spectra was analyzed. The experimental study of cells and DNAs of E. coli and cells/spores and DNA of Bacillus subtilis was conducted. Samples were prepared in the form of water solutions (suspension) with the concentrations in the range 0.01-1 mg/ml. The measurable difference in the THz transmission spectra of E. coli and Bacillus subtilis DNAs was observed. The correlation between chromosomal DNA signature and a corresponding entire spore/cell signature was observed. This correlation was especially pronounced for spores of Bacillus subtilis and their DNA. These experimental results justify our approach to develop a model for THz signatures of biological simulants and agents. In parallel with the experimental study, for the first time, the computer modeling and simulation of chromosome DNAs of E. coli and Bacillus subtilis was performed and their THz signatures were calculated. The DNA structures were optimized using the Amber software package. Also, we developed the initial model of the DNA fragment poly(dAT)-poly(dTA) solvated in water to be used in the simulations of genetic material (DNA and RNA) of spores and cells. Molecular dynamical simulations were conducted using explicit solvent (3-point TIP3P water) and implicit solvent (generalized Born) models. The calculated THz signatures of E. coli and Bacillus subtilis DNAs and poly(dAT)-poly(dTA) reproduce many features of our measured spectra. The results of this study demonstrate that THz Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy is a promising tool in generating spectral data for complex biological objects such as bacterial cells and spores.

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 November 2005
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 5995, Chemical and Biological Standoff Detection III, 59950N (4 November 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.629959
Show Author Affiliations
Alexei Bykhovski, Univ. of Virginia (United States)
Xiaowei Li, Univ. of Virginia (United States)
Tatiana Globus, Univ. of Virginia (United States)
Tatyana Khromova, Univ. of Virginia (United States)
Boris Gelmont, Univ. of Virginia (United States)
Dwight Woolard, U.S. Army Research Lab./Army Research Office (United States)
Alan C. Samuels, Edgewood Chemical and Biological Ctr. (United States)
James O. Jensen, Edgewood Chemical and Biological Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5995:
Chemical and Biological Standoff Detection III
James O. Jensen; Jean-Marc Thériault, Editor(s)

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