Water Toxicity Detection using Genetically Engineered Yeast

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Army
Amount:
$730,000.00
Award Year:
2010
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
W81XWH-09-C-0073
Agency Tracking Number:
A083-174-0418
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
Army 08-174
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
Agave BioSystems, Inc.
P.O. Box 100, Ithaca, NY, 14850
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
022552900
Principal Investigator:
Kathie Berghorn
Staff Scientist
(607) 272-0002
kberghorn@agavebio.com
Business Contact:
Noe Salazar
President
(512) 656-6200
nsalazar@agavebio.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
The rapid evaluation of drinking water toxicity in the field is a necessity for the safety of our soldiers. To achieve field portability and sensitive screening for identification of toxic industrial chemicals (TICs) a handheld device that is biologically-based and easy to use with components that remain viable for 6 months would be ideal. In Phase I, Agave BioSystems proposed to develop an accurate and efficient cell-based biosensor using engineered yeast to rapidly evaluate toxicity in drinking water. Phase I results were highly successful in that Agave BioSystems developed a yeast biosensor exploiting yeast strains engineered to report changes in fluorescence upon exposure to chemical stress, resulting in proof-of-concept for this novel biosensor. This methodology utilized Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast measuring differences in GFP expression to ensure TIC detection accuracy establishing proof-of-concept for rapid detection of a range of toxicants between MEG and HLC. Additionally, this novel yeast strain can be lyophilized for long term storage and is expected to be responsive to several classes of TICs.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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