Omowunmi Sadik’s laboratory has pioneered metal-enhanced electrochemical detection, combining advanced nanomaterials with electrochemistry for the development of smart sensors for proteins, nucleic acids, toxins and cancer cells. Her research centers on interfacial molecular recognition and synthesis of functional polymeric platforms for sensing, remediation and cell recognition. Sadik’s research has provided important mechanistic insights into nanostructured polymeric materials, resulting in a new class of electrode materials [Nano Letters, 1 (6), 305, 2001; Langmuir, 21(15), 6891-6899, 2005].
With Department of Defense funding, Sadik and her colleagues have developed a prototype of a new ultrasensitive portable capillary sensor (UPACTM). UPACTM is self-contained, battery operated and equipped with remote monitoring, automated sample handling, sterilization and immobilization and fluidics control modules. Rapid UPACTM assays were reported for biological agent spores and E. coli with four-fold lower detection limits than conventional ELISA techniques in about 15 minutes. Applications for this technology include drug detection (in the place of drug-sniffing dogs) and bomb detection.
Sadik holds two patents for her work on a sensor that allows doctors to take readings for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, in minutes rather than the three to four days required by other tests.
- Ultrasensitive portable capillary sensor (UPAC), RB-194.
- Sadik O. A., Xu Hongwu, “Synthesis, Characterization and Application of Pyridylazo Bioconjugates as Diagnostic and Therapeutic Agents,” U.S. PatentNo. 6,602,989, 2003, RB-123.