351027 Development of Peptides for Detection of Munitions Constituents Using Genetic Modification of E. Coli
Long term monitoring of waste disposal sites for Munitions Constituents, MCs, using the Environmental Protection Agency Method 8330A, high performance liquid chromatography, is a costly analytical technique for which there is not a current comparable alternative. This has inspired research and development of fast, low cost techniques to detect parts per billion concentrations of MCs such as such as 2,4,6-TNT as well as other MCs in ground water. The U.S. Army Research Lab, U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center in Vicksburg, MS, Columbia University Department of Chemical Engineering, and the Department of Chemistry and Life Science at the United States Military Academy have on-going research efforts combining electrochemical engineering, microfluidics, and protein engineering with a goal of developing engineering fundamentals to enable in-situ detection of MCs.
The current focus of this research is on development of methods that will selectively detect concentrations of an MC from roughly nanomolar quantities to reliably detectable levels via electrochemical methodologies using a peptide separation unit in line with an electrochemical sensor. During this Advanced Individual Academic Development Program work was done on developing a method to biologically produce peptides engineered to bind TNT using phage display techniques.
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