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Tallying White Blood Cells on Paper
A cost effective means for counting white blood cells promises to improve diagnosis in low-resource areas

White blood cells (gray spheres with spikes) are too large to pass through the pores in paper and thus become trapped on the surface. The gold nanoparticles (red spheres) that bind to the cell surface result in the formation of a dark spot (see inset). In the absence of white blood cells, all gold nanoparticles would flow through the paper.
Reprinted from Ref. 1, Copyright 2015, with permission from Elsevier.

July 15, 2015 – An inexpensive, low-tech method for counting white blood cells, that uses gold nanoparticles and paper has been devised by researchers from the A*STAR Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology. The simple, low-cost and compact nature of this method makes it particularly attractive for point-of-care applications in settings that lack sophisticated medical resources.

White blood cell count is a vital indicator of a person’s health. Too many white blood cells may indicate a bacterial infection, tissue damage or inflammatory diseases such as arthritis or allergies, whereas too few could denote a viral infection or bone marrow deficiency. Furthermore, white blood cell count can be used to predict a person’s risk of developing conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

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YRP Student Wins Fourth Place at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair

Congratulations to our Youth Research Program (YRP) student Claudia Lee on winning the 4th Award at the 2015 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair on May 10-15 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 18-year-old Claudia from Raffles Institution clinched the fourth place in the Chemistry category for her IBN research attachment project on utilizing metal-free click chemistry for the development of peptide-based biomaterials, out of 104 chemistry projects from around the world.

More than 1,700 of the most promising young scientists, engineers and mathematicians participated in the world’s largest international pre-university science competition. Claudia was one of 6 representatives from Singapore, and had won the Gold Award at the 2015 Singapore Science and Engineering Fair in March.

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A Gel That Can Make Drugs Last Longer

The IBN researchers who developed the new drug-delivering hydrogel for the treatment of hepatitis C.
From right: Dr Motoichi Kuriswa, Dr Ki Hyun Bae, Dr Keming Xu and Mr Fan Lee.

June 25, 2015 – Researchers at the Institute of Bioengineering and Nanotechnology (IBN) of A*STAR have developed a drug-delivering hydrogel to treat chronic diseases such as hepatitis C, a liver disease that kills around 500,000 people worldwide every year.

“The new gel from IBN prevents premature drug release in the body. This allows for long-term drug delivery and reduces the side effects from frequent drug administration. We hope that our solution can improve the treatment and well-being of patients suffering from chronic diseases such as hepatitis C,” said IBN Executive Director Professor Jackie Y. Ying.

The standard treatment for chronic hepatitis C infections includes a weekly injection of a protein drug called PEGylated interferon. The frequent injections increases patient discomfort, is time-consuming, and can cause depression and fatigue.

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IBN in the News

Tallying White Blood Cells on Paper
A*STAR Research , 15 Jul 2015

Tallying White Blood Cells on Paper
Nanowerk, 15 Jul 2015

New Contact Lens Coating For Fighting Eye Infections
Chemical & Engineering News, 29 Jun 2015

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4 Aug
IBN Seminar Series: Supramolecular Systems at Work by Prof. Stefan Matile, University of Geneva, Switzerland

6 Dec - 10 Dec
4th Nano Today Conference

Event Calendar   


Colorimetric Detection of Small Molecules in Complex Matrixes via Target-Mediated Growth of Aptamer-Functionalized Gold Nanoparticles
Analytical Chemistry, (2015)
DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.5b00875.
(IF: 5.636) article

Enzyme-Mediated Hyaluronic Acid–Tyramine Hydrogels for the Propagation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells in 3D
Acta Biomaterialia, (2015)
DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2015.06.026.
(IF: 6.025) article

Microstructured Dextran Hydrogels for Burst-Free Sustained Release of PEGylated Protein Drugs
Biomaterials, (2015)
DOI: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2015.06.008.
(IF: 8.557) article



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