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Monitoring Microbes in the Spacecraft Environment by Mass Spectrometry of…

Award Information

Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch:
N/A
Award ID:
77612
Program Year/Program:
2006 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
053368
Solicitation Year:
N/A
Solicitation Topic Code:
N/A
Solicitation Number:
N/A
Small Business Information
BIOTEX, INC.
8058 EL RIO ST HOUSTON, TX -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
 
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2006
Title: Monitoring Microbes in the Spacecraft Environment by Mass Spectrometry of Ribosomal RNA
Agency: NASA
Contract: NNM06AA44C
Award Amount: $70,000.00
 

Abstract:

The unique stresses in the spacecraft environment including isolation, containment, weightlessness, increased radiation exposure, and enhanced microbial contamination have resulted in a compromise of the immune system in every human or animal that has ever flown in space. Identifying and monitoring the microbial population in the spacecraft environment has therefore been identified as a key maintaining crew health on extended missions. While molecular methods are rapidly supplanting phenotypic identification of micro-organisms, the most successful rapid approaches have employed organism-specific nucleic acid "probes" or primers for PCR amplification. Identification by nucleic acid hybridization therefore implies a priori knowledge (or at least suspicion) of a putative organism. Such assays (including DNA microarrays) are therefore limited in generality by the number of probes or primers on hand. Sequencing of DNA is more general but time consuming and problematic in microgravity. This project describes an "open" or exploratory system with no such limitation which is also superior in speed to DNA sequencing. By leveraging the wealth of publicly available ribosomal RNA sequences for thousands of bacterial strains, and rapid mass spectrometry of novel, mass-modified RNA fragments, the system can identify bacterial species in complex organism mixtures and report their relative abundances. The technology is amenable to high-throughput automated analysis of over 200 samples

Principal Investigator:

George W. Jackson
Principal Investigator
7137410111
bill@biotexmedical.com

Business Contact:

Ashok Gowda
President & CEO
7137410111
ashok@biotexmedical.com
Small Business Information at Submission:

BioTex, Inc.
8058 El Rio St. Houston, TX 77054

EIN/Tax ID: 742824041
DUNS: N/A
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No