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Bioluminescent Bioreporter Integrated Circuits

Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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Publications:

PDF Document Publication12-G00198_0370.pdf (529 KB)

Technology Marketing SummaryTo address the need for fieldable real-time biological recognition systems, ORNL researchers developed a "laboratory on a chip" using genetically engineered whole cell biosensors attached to integrated circuits (ICs). These bioluminescent bioreporters can be deployed to assist with environmental detection and analysis during natural and human disasters.DescriptionWhile biosensors have been in use for decades, current devices have serious drawbacks, including an inability to work in real time outside laboratory settings. In addition, many current biosensors are too expensive, bulky, or delicate to deploy in remote locations and don’t provide a secure microenvironment for the bioorganisms. ORNL bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuits (BBICs), developed to address these drawbacks, can be used for environmental monitoring, tracking of bioremediation efforts, in vivo disease detection and tracking, water and food quality testing—virtually any application requiring accurate, inexpensive remote sensing where size and durability are considerations. Prototypes of the ORNL BBIC have been successfully used for rapid detection of microbial metabolites in enclosed spaces such as would be encountered when detecting fungal growth in wall cavities or volatile compound emissions from building materials or cleaning products.

The BBIC consists of two main parts: the bioreporter and the electronic circuitry to detect, record, and communicate the response of the bioreporter. The bioreporter is a bacteria genetically engineered to produce light when a particular substance is encountered or metabolized. The bioreporter is encapsulated in a polymer matrix above a photodiode on the IC, allowing the gas or fluid being sampled to reach the bioreporter and emitted light to reach the photodiode. The IC is a standard complementary metal-oxide semiconductor, selected for its low power consumption, low cost, and miniaturization capabilities. Depending on the application, the device may also include a current-to-frequency converter, digital counter, and wired or wireless transmitters, as well as nutrient reservoirs and microfluidic pumps to provide nutrients to the bioluminescent bacteria.
Benefits
  • Rugged, inexpensive, and easily deployed
  • Can record in real time
  • Can be used in remote monitoring
  • Highly sensitive (parts per billion)
  • No radioactive materials used
  • Can be deployed at multiple locations and networked
  • Capable of housing multiple bioreporters
Applications and Industries
  • Rapid detection of contaminants
  • Groundwater and/or hazardous chemical monitoring
  • Environmental pollutant detection
  • Food and water quality testing
  • Oil exploration
  • Drug discovery
  • Industrial process control
Patents and Patent Applications
ID Number
Title and Abstract
Primary Lab
Date
Patent 6,117,643
Patent
6,117,643
Bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit
Disclosed are monolithic bioelectronic devices comprising a bioreporter and an OASIC. These bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit are useful in detecting substances such as pollutants, explosives, and heavy-metals residing in inhospitable areas such as groundwater, industrial process vessels, and battlefields. Also disclosed are methods and apparatus for environmental pollutant detection, oil exploration, drug discovery, industrial process control, and hazardous chemical monitoring.
09/12/2000
Issued
Patent 6,905,834
Patent
6,905,834
Bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit detection methods
Disclosed are monolithic bioelectronic devices comprising a bioreporter and an OASIC. These bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit are useful in detecting substances such as pollutants, explosives, and heavy-metals residing in inhospitable areas such as groundwater, industrial process vessels, and battlefields. Also disclosed are methods and apparatus for detection of particular analytes, including ammonia and estrogen compounds.
06/14/2005
Issued
Patent 7,371,538
Patent
7,371,538
Microluminometer chip and method to measure bioluminescence
An integrated microluminometer includes an integrated circuit chip having at least one n-well/p-substrate junction photodetector for converting light received into a photocurrent, and a detector on the chip for processing the photocurrent. A distributed electrode configuration including a plurality of spaced apart electrodes disposed on an active region of the photodetector is preferably used to raise efficiency.
05/13/2008
Issued
Patent 7,208,286
Patent
7,208,286
Bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit devices and methods for detecting ammonia
Monolithic bioelectronic devices for the detection of ammonia includes a microorganism that metabolizes ammonia and which harbors a lux gene fused with a heterologous promoter gene stably incorporated into the chromosome of the microorganism and an Optical Application Specific Integrated Circuit (OASIC). The microorganism is generally a bacterium.
04/24/2007
Issued
Patent 7,090,992
Patent
7,090,992
Bioluminescent bioreporter integrated circuit devices and methods for detecting estrogen
Bioelectronic devices for the detection of estrogen include a collection of eukaryotic cells which harbor a recombinant lux gene from a high temperature microorganism wherein the gene is operably linked with a heterologous promoter gene. A detectable light-emitting lux gene product is expressed in the presence of the estrogen and detected by the device.
08/15/2006
Issued
Technology Status
Technology IDDevelopment StageAvailabilityPublishedLast Updated
UT-B ID 199700370PrototypeAvailable07/11/201207/11/2012

Contact ORNL About This Technology

To: David L. Sims<simsdl@ornl.gov>