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Thesis Defense - A Piezoelectric Biosensor for Monitoring Interfacial Phenomena
Date: December 12, 2000
Time: 1:00 PM
Location: Commonwealth Hall, Room: Room 610

Speaker(s):
Joe Sorial, M.S. Candidate in Biomedical Engineering
Advisor: Dr. Lec
Co-Advisor: Dr. Barbee

Details:
A Piezoelectric Biosensor for Monitoring Interfacial Phenomena

In numerous biomedical applications, it is vital to observe the activity of various biological systems such as cells, proteins or bacteria in solution, and their interaction with different natural and artificial interfaces. Monitoring sedimentation of cells or antibodies, their adhesion to the surfaces of different levels of biocompability, or the study of the impact of the drugs on cells or bacteria is of vital importance for biomedical and pharmaceutical applications. Currently, there is no instrumentation capable of quantitatively determining the kinetics of these processes in real time. In this work, we study the use of a Thickness Shear Mode (TSM) piezoelectric resonator as a biosensor for rapid and sensitive detection of a broad range of biological interfacial phenomena. The TSM utilizes shear mechanical waves, which penetrate liquids at a distance of tens of nanometers, and hence effectively monitor interfacial processes. A colloidal solution based on polystyrene spheres, which simulates the cells in solution, is studied in-depth. This well-defined medium allows identification of several important processes and the calibration the proposed sensor system. The work is concluded by measurements of endothelial cell properties such as sedimentation, adhesion and fixation.

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