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Single Molecule Arrays for Fundamental Enzyme Studies and Ultra-Sensitive Diagnostics

Wednesday, Jan 16, 2013
2:00pm - 3:00pm
Wyss Institute, Room 521, 3 Blackfan Circle, Boston, MA 02115



  • David R. Walt, Ph.D.
  • Robinson Professor of Chemistry
  • Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor
  • Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Tufts University

Presently available methods for detecting biomolecules are primarily based on measuring "analog" signals - the higher or lower the concentration, the higher or lower the signal, respectively. Digital measurements, based on counting single molecules, enable extremely high sensitivity because low background signals can be readily distinguished from the high digital signals making for a much lower limit of detection. Dr. Walt and his team have developed a method that allows researchers to measure the concentration of proteins more than a thousand times lower than ELISAs. The method also allows researchers to observe the behavior of individual enzyme molecules. Both fundamental enzymology studies as well as the application to new diagnostic tests will be described.  



  • George Whitesides, Ph.D.
  • Founding Core Faculty Member
  • Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University
  • Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor
  • Harvard University 
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