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BGN, Ram to Develop Diagnostic Sensor

Photonics.com
Oct 2017
BEER-SHEVA, Israel, Oct. 16, 2017 — BGN, the technology-transfer company of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU), is collaborating with Singapore-based sensor developer Ram Group to develop a minimally invasive diagnostic sensor for earlier detection and treatment of cancer and other diseases than is possible today.

"We welcome the strong collaboration with Ram Group, which has R&D facilities in Israel," said Zafrir Levi, vice president of business development at BGN. "This technology is another example of the state-of-the-art applied science created here in BGU's labs."

The collaboration aims to develop a sensor that will detect specific antibodies that are known to be signs of emerging diseases in the blood at very low and previously undetectable concentrations. The research project is being led by Professor Gabby Sarousi in BGU’s electro-optical engineering department and the Ilse Katz Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology.

"We are adapting existing sensor technologies to be able to detect very small amounts of chemical and biological components in fluids and in gas, in concentrations that are much lower than PPB (parts-per-billion)," Sarusi said. "The results will render any potential treatment, including chemotherapy, much more effective than today, since it will be conducted on cancer at such an early stage that it has yet to manifest itself as a visible tumor."

The sensor will be composed of a miniature light waveguide ring with a diameter of a few hundred micrometers fabricated on a semiconductor chip and coated with chemical or biological receptors. When a tiny amount of liquid such as blood is placed on the ring, the receptors identify and attract the chemical component — i.e. antibodies — which is then identified using optical wavelength analysis.

"The sensor we are developing for Ram Group can be used in two different ways: 100 percent optical sensing or one that combines optical sensing with an electronic sensor," Sarusi said.

BusinessBen-Gurion University of the NegevRam GroupsensingBiophotonicsdiagnosticspartnershipsAsia-Pacificeducation

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