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Reference type: Conference Proceeding
Authors: Cullen DC, Grant WD, Piletsky S, Sims MR
Publication date: 2001
Article title: Proposed biomimetic molecular sensor array for astrobiology applications.
Page numbers: 329-332
Alternative URL: http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/full/2001ESASP.496..329C

Proceedings title: Exo-/Astro-Biology
Editors: Ehrenfreund P, Angerer O, Battrick B
City: Noordwijk, Netherlands
ISBN: 0379-6566 ISBN: 92-9092-806-9
Volume number: 496

Abstract: A key objective of future astrobiology lander missions, e.g. to Mars and Europa, is the detection of biomarkers - molecules whose presence indicates the existence of either current or extinct life. To address limitations of current analytical methods for biomarker detection, we describe the methodology of a new project for demonstration of a robust molecular-recognition sensor array for astrobiology biomarkers. The sensor array will be realised by assembling components that have been demonstrated individually in previous or current research projects. The major components are (i) robust artificial molecular receptors comprised of molecular imprinted polymer (MIP) recognition systems and (ii) a sensor array comprised of both optical and electrochemical sensor elements. These components will be integrated together using ink-jet printing technology coupled with in situ photo-polymerisation of MIPs. For demonstration, four model biomarkers are chosen as targets and represent various classes of potential biomarkers. Objectives of the proposed work include (i) demonstration of practical proof-of- concept, (ii) identify areas for further development and (iii) provide performance and design data for follow-up projects leading to astrobiology missions

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