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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2006 Feb;17(1):28-33. Epub 2006 Jan 18.

Advances in optical detection strategies for reporter signal measurements.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry, Foster Hall, Tennessee Technological University, Cookeville, TN 38505, USA.


Many recent advances in bioreporter technology focus on challenges related to bioengineering, yet in many applications implementation of optical signal measurement is equally susceptible to improvement. For bioluminescent bioreporters, one area of effort lies in the development of semiconductor chip-based detector modules; this holds great promise for ultra-compact and field-deployable instrumentation, but has not yet had a palpable impact on improved detection limits. Regarding lower detection limits, single-molecule detection techniques have seen their first application to bioreporters, and preliminary results serve as an indication of future promise. Another technique applicable to fluorescent bioreporters is fluorescence flow cytometry, which is rapid, suitable for high-throughput screening, and lends itself to increased analytical specificity through simple algorithmic approaches to data treatment.

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