Most people obtain the majority of their food from large supermarket chains that buy in produce from a range of suppliers. Indeed, we have come to rely on numerous globally sourced food products and take it for granted that the food we buy is suitable for consumption.
Medical professionals are under an increasing amount of pressure to provide early diagnoses and more efficacious treatments with fewer side effects. There is also a demand for more information about disease risk and prophylactic options.
2018 was a big year for cannabis. Vermont became the first state to legalize recreational cannabis by state legislature, a growing number of lawmakers (including those intending to run in the 2020 presidential election) voiced their support for legalizing cannabis.
The rate at which the world consumes energy is increasing. Stores of chemical energy such as oil and gas, broadly referred to as fuels, remain one of the primary energy sources for today’s world. The versatility, reliability and portability of fuel has made it indispensable to the modern world.
Medicinal products derived from a biological source are commonly referred to as biotherapeutics or biologicals. They are typically proteins or polypeptides of >40 amino acids whose active components are constructed using biotechnology.
Stability testing is one of the most important steps during the development of a pharmaceutical product. It requires a series of analyses to determine how long a product maintains the properties and characteristics it possessed at the time of its packaging.
Forensic evidence has become central to the criminal justice system for establishing the guilt or innocence of potential suspects, tracing the origins of illegal trade and determining whether or not crimes are related.
The journey from bench to bedside is a long one in the world of pharmaceutical research, entailing large expense, complex processes and, often, dead ends. It is estimated that the cost of bringing a new drug to the market is around $2.6 billion and takes at least 10 years.
Contamination and pollution of our air, soil, and water with chemical species resulting from human activities are threats to human health and the environment. Identifying and quantifying substances present in natural environments can give us an insight into the behavior of industry and society, aiding regulatory policy development and enforcement.
A fundamental goal of the food industry is to provide consumers with quality food that is safe to enjoy. There has always been the risk of products becoming contaminated during preparation and so regular food analysis is a routine part of food manufacturing.
‘Omics’ research is the non-targeted and non-biased analysis of a specific biological sample, the findings of which may give rise to hypotheses that can then be tested by further investigations. It incorporates a range of disciplines and sophisticated analytical technologies.
Nanotechnology has become an increasingly important area of science with many applications.. This article outlines the current trends in nanotechnology, characterization, and regulation, which will be discussed at Pittcon 2018.
A multitude of disciplines within the biomedical, chemical, and pharmaceutical fields often rely on mass spectrometry (MS) as a means for identifying compound structure, quantifying metabolites, and measuring molecules in mixtures of varying complexities. This highly sensitive approach for the study of biological systems is also used in drug discovery and is crucial in the development of potentially life-saving therapeutics.
The structure of DNA was discovered over 60 years ago, yet many mysteries remain on how our genome functions. In order to understand what the genome means we need to know, not just its sequence, but how this relates to phenotype. Our genome is over three billion bases long, meaning that genome sequencing produces vast quantities of data that must be deciphered and, historically, this has been a slow process.
Against a background of increasingly liberal cannabis laws, regulators and scientists have been trying to keep pace with cannabis as it has gone from a near-universally illicit substance to a burgeoning industry in just a matter of years.
The deliberate or accidental contamination of food products is a prominent issue with wide-ranging consequences in the 21st century. It can encompass multi-billion-dollar fraud, hazards to public health and even deliberate attempts to harm human life.
How does Analytical Chemistry Support Preservation in Cultural Heritage Studies?
An interview with Dr. Fenella G. France, to introduce the ideas behind the Plenary Lecture to be given at Pittcon 2019, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
The Evolution of MDLC in the Pharmaceutical Industry
In this interview, Dr Kelly Zhang outlines recent advances in multidimensional liquid chromatography (MDLC) for pharmaceutical analysis, to be discussed in her presentation at Pittcon 2019. Interview conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
Novel Imaging Methods for Biomedicine
An interview with Dr Wei Min, describing his work involving the development of new chemical imaging techniques for studying small molecules, which led to him being awarded the 2019 Pittcon Achievement Award, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
Are Electronic Cigarettes Facilitating Illicit Drug Use?
In this interview, Dr. Michelle Peace, an Associate Professor at VCU, provides an overview of her research into the use of e-cigarettes for the inhalation of illicit drugs and the dangers that this poses to health and society as a whole, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
Bringing Antimicrobial Susceptibility Testing (AST) to the Community
An interview with Dr. Ester Segal from the Technion (Israel Institute of Technology), discussing the development of a 2D silicon microarray that supports the growth of bacteria and fungi for rapid antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST) in the community. Dr. Segal will present her work at Pittcon 2019. Interview conducted by Alina Shrourou.
Improving Lab Productivity with Temperature Control
An interview with Philip Preston, outlining the importance of temperature control in any experiment, and the solutions Polyscience will be presenting at Pittcon 2019, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
Free Radical Formation in Electronic Cigarette Aerosols
An interview with Dr John Richie, Professor of Public Health Sciences & Pharmacology, Penn State College of Medicine, conducted by Stuart Milne, BA.
The Human Microbiome – A New Potential Fingerprint in Forensic Evidence?
An interview with Professor Jack Gilbert, Director of the Microbione Center, University of Chicago, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc.
Using Smartphones for Cancer Diagnosis and Management
An interview with Dr Cesar M. Castro, Director of the Cancer Program, MGH Center for Systems Biology & Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, conducted by Alina Shrourou, BSc
Novel Nanomaterials for Improved Food Safety
Prof. Antje J. Baeumner, University Regensburg, Institute for Analytical Chemistry, talks to AZoNano about her research into novel Nanomaterials for improved food safety.
Why Should We Weigh Every Protein in the Human Body?
It has been announced that you will be doing a talk as part of the “Structural Mass Spectrometry and Top Down Proteomics of Proteoforms and Their Complexes” symposia at Pittcon 2018. Please can you outline the project you are working on and will be discussing during your talk?
Epigenetics: A New Tool for Forensic Detectives
It has been announced that you will be presenting in the “Analytical Methods in Forensic Biology and DNA Analysis” symposium at Pittcon 2018. Why are bioanalytical methods important for forensics?
Genomic analysis technologies: past, present and future
Illumina was founded in 1998. It was based on technology invented by Dr. David Walt that was licensed from Tufts University and formed the basis of our microarray business. The fundamental invention was a unique way to put beads in wells that were created on fiber optic bundles, with the beads being imaged through the fibers.
Advances in optogenetics
Optogenetics is a way of introducing information into the brain using light, it targets specific cells or connections across the brain. It is fast, like brain signaling, and helps you communicate with neural circuitry in a language more similar to what is normally used within the brain.
Using spherical nucleic acids to track and treat disease
Using spherical nucleic acids to track and treat disease; An interview with Dr. Chad Mirkin, Northwestern University, conducted by April Cashin-Garbutt, MA (Cantab)
Diagnosing infections through molecules in patient breath
Diagnosing infections through molecules in patient breath; an interview with Dr. Jane Hill, Dartmouth College, conducted by April Cashin-Garbutt, MA (Cantab)
Decoding the exposome through breath biomarkers
Decoding the exposome through breath biomarkers; an interview with Prof. Joachim D. Pleil, US Environmental Protection Agency, conducted by April Cashin-Garbutt, MA (Cantab)
Liquid chromatography is a well-established separation technique used across a broad range of applications to characterise the various components of a mixture. It may be used, for example, in research to study biological responses, in medicine to identify potential biomarkers of disease or treatment response, in environmental analysis to monitor for the presence of pollutants, or in pharmaceutical development and production to identify active drug components or screen for impurities. (READ MORE)
Patent expirations, growth of disease prevalence, and the greater availability of advanced diagnostic procedures have increased the discovery and development of new biopharmaceutical compounds at an exponential rate. Pharmaceutical outsourcing has become a massive industry and represents a key driver behind many of the drugs brought to market today. (READ MORE)
The complex physiological process of aging represents many problems among rapidly aging populations. One well recognized consequence of aging is degradation of immune function, which is referred to as immunosenescence. (READ MORE)
The prevention of accidental and intentional explosions is an increasingly prominent global issue that depends on the detection of explosive materials and analysis of post-explosion residues. However, detection of explosive materials can be dangerous due to the imminent threat of explosion, and the potential presence of toxic materials. Therefore, techniques for detecting explosive materials must be fast, efficient and able to operate from a safe distance. (READ MORE)
The analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is one of the most important topics under discussion at Pittcon 2017 in Chicago. The accurate measurement of VOCs enters numerous scientific arenas from the detection of VOCs as biological markers for cancer cells (health monitoring chemical fingerprint)  to monitoring the environment for levels of VOCs deemed harmful to human health [2, 3, 4]. (READ MORE)
Cells vary considerably within cell populations, including within a particular type of tissue or cell. No two cells have the same response to their surroundings, since each cell’s behavior is dictated by the particular genes it expresses and at what level. This unique gene expression is what controls how the cell performs in the body. (READ MORE)
Neurological diseases are some of the most challenging areas for drug discovery and development. There is significant unmet need in the marketplace, with an associated high degree of disability, lost productivity, and loss of quality of life. (READ MORE)
Attitudes towards cannabis have shifted dramatically over the last two decades, and this has been reflected in recent changes to the law in many countries around the world. Just this November, an additional four US states voted to make recreational cannabis use legal, bringing the total to eight, (plus Washington DC). And over half of US states have legalized medicinal cannabis use. (READ MORE)
Protecting consumers has long been a priority for the food industry, but modern times have changed the specific challenges producers and regulators face when it comes to food safety. Increasing globalization presents new opportunities for food fraud with the potential for billion-dollar payoffs. (READ MORE)
The delivery of drugs and diagnostic markers to cancer tissues has been a major challenge in the development of cancer therapies. Typical delivery methods distribute products throughout the body, affecting healthy and cancerous cells, thereby toxic effects to healthy cells limit the scope and effectiveness of the anticancer therapy. (READ MORE)
X-ray diffraction is a powerful tool for determining the structure of crystalline materials – this is most often used for identification of unknown samples, such as in geology and earth sciences, or for studying protein structures in life sciences. It can also be used to determine the unit cell dimensions of a known crystal, or to measure the purity of a sample. (READ MORE)
Ion channels are essential to key cellular processes including signal transduction, osmoregulation and maintenance of the membrane potential. They are therefore the targets of many clinically used drugs. (READ MORE)
A wide variety of contaminants with the potential to cause harm to humans and animals can make their way into the environment. They can be found in the air, water and soil and may come from sources such as industrial waste, landfill sites, pesticides and pharmaceutical drugs. (READ MORE)
Proteomics is playing an increasingly important role in the discovery of disease biomarkers and the identification of new therapeutic targets. Proteomics involves the separation, identification, and quantification of proteins. It also includes the characterization and analysis of proteoforms that arise as a result of post-translational modifications (PTMs) and sequence variants such as mutants and alternatively spliced isoforms. (READ MORE)
Raman spectroscopy is a type of vibrational spectroscopy like the more widely used infrared spectroscopy. It measures the way light is scattered by a material. In most cases the wavelength of the scattered light is identical to the incident light and is known as Rayleigh scattering. (READ MORE)
Spectroscopic methods exploit the interactions between matter and electromagnetic radiation in order to probe molecular fine structure. The way samples interact with radiation reveals a lot of information about its nature; making spectroscopy a useful tool for both qualitative and quantitative analysis. (READ MORE)
The need for accurate cancer detection: The ability to distinguish cancer cells from healthy cells during surgery is essential for preventing the removal of healthy tissue and ensuring no tumor remnants are left behind. (READ MORE)
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurodegenerative condition that causes dementia. In this disease, dementia symptoms such as memory loss and difficulties with language, problem-solving and reasoning gradually worsen until they eventually start to interfere with everyday life and basic tasks such as eating and drinking. (READ MORE)
Food allergies are a major public health concern and are increasing worldwide. Globally, it is thought that between 220 and 250 million people suffer from a food allergy. Ninety percent of cases involve sensitivity to one of the ‘Big Eight’ allergens: egg, fish, milk, peanut, shellfish, soy, tree nuts, or wheat. (READ MORE)
Many consumers like to buy products marked as herbal or “natural”, often regarding these to be better for them, or even harmless. But, in reality, many such products are laced with unlabeled substances, which often includes pharmaceuticals that have long since lost their regulatory approval. (READ MORE)