Handheld FRET-Aptamer Sensor for Bone Markers

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX08CC16P
Agency Tracking Number: 074375
Amount: $99,948.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2008
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: X12.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Operational Technologies Corporation
4100 N.W. Loop 410, San Antonio, TX, 78229-4253
DUNS: 154088710
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 John Bruno
 Principal Investigator
 (210) 731-0015
Business Contact
 Judson Miner
Title: Business Official
Phone: (210) 731-0015
Email: jay.miner@otcorp.com
Research Institution
Astronauts lose approximately 1-1.5% of their bone mass per month during space travel due to a lack of physical stress in the microgravity environment. Although, no effective treatments or prophylactic regimens have yet been defined, it is important to monitor the bone loss process in space. As such, the sensor must be compact and facile to operate. Therefore, OpTech proposes to extend its already successful and patent-pending competitive fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-aptamer assay technology to the detection of bone loss and formation markers such as osteocalcin fragments, hydroxylysine, hydroxyproline, C-terminal and N-terminal telopeptides. In Phase I, OpTech will develop, clone and sequence aptamers to each of these markers. OpTech will also incorporate fluorophore-labeled dUTP into the sequenced aptamers by asymmetric PCR and complex them to their quencher-labeled bone markers for testing in buffer, animal sera, and urine. Finally, in Phase I OpTech will dry and reconstitute the assays that will be tested using a commercially available handheld, battery-operated fluorometer and validated using OpTech's spectrofluorometer. In Phase II, the FRET-aptamer assays will be optimized and packaged in special leak-proof sealed plastic cuvettes and delivered to NASA along with the handheld fluorometer for testing on the ISS or other space missions.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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