Jorge Rubio-Retama of Complutense University of Madrid in Spain will develop a portable photoluminescent device that can identify mosquitoes infected with human pathogens such as Dengue virus by detecting specific micro (mi)RNA molecules. They will build the sensor from light-emitting nanoparticles carrying RNA sequences that can bind to known miRNAs found in infected mosquitoes, and graphene oxide, which can also bind the nanoparticles and quench the fluorescence. They will work to enhance the sensitivity of the sensor for detecting miRNAs, and develop data analysis methods and protocols to easily extract RNA from mosquitoes. The device will be built for ease of use in the field.
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