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1.
Environ Pollut ; 291: 118191, 2021 Dec 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1427873

ABSTRACT

Between 9 March and 18 May 2020, strict lockdown measures were adopted in Italy for containing the COVID-19 pandemic: in Rome, despite vehicular traffic on average was more than halved, it was not observed a evident decrease of the airborne particulate matter (PM) concentrations, as assessed by air quality data. In this study, daily PM10 filters were collected from selected automated stations operated in Rome by the regional network of air quality monitoring: their magnetic properties - including magnetic susceptibility, hysteresis parameters and FORC (first order reversal curves) diagrams - were compared during and after the lockdown, for outlining the impact of the COVID-19 measures on airborne particulate matter. In urban traffic sites, the PM10 concentrations did not significantly change after the end of the lockdown, when vehicular traffic promptly returned to its usual levels; conversely, the average volume and mass magnetic susceptibilities approximately doubled, and the linear correlation between volume magnetic susceptibility and PM10 concentration became significant, pointing out the link between PM10 concentrations and the increasing levels of traffic-related magnetic emissions. Magnetite-like minerals, attributed to non-exhaust brakes emissions, dominated the magnetic fraction of PM10 near urban traffic sites, with natural magnetic components emerging in background sites and during exogenous dusts atmospheric events. Magnetic susceptibility constituted a fast and sensitive proxy of vehicular particulate emissions: the magnetic properties can play a relevant role in the source apportionment of PM10, especially when unsignificant variations in its concentration levels may mask important changes in the traffic-related magnetic fraction. As a further hint, increasing attention should be drawn to the reduction of brake wear emissions, that are overcoming by far fuel exhausts as the main particulate pollutant in traffic contexts.


Subject(s)
Air Pollutants , Air Pollution , COVID-19 , Air Pollutants/analysis , Air Pollution/analysis , Communicable Disease Control , Environmental Monitoring , Humans , Italy , Magnetic Phenomena , Pandemics , Particulate Matter/analysis , Rome , SARS-CoV-2 , Vehicle Emissions/analysis
2.
J Am Chem Soc ; 143(13): 4942-4948, 2021 04 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387161

ABSTRACT

Multidimensional NOESY experiments targeting correlations between exchangeable imino and amino protons provide valuable information about base pairing in nucleic acids. It has been recently shown that the sensitivity of homonuclear correlations involving RNA's labile imino protons can be significantly enhanced, by exploiting the repolarization brought about by solvent exchanges. Homonuclear correlations, however, are of limited spectral resolution, and usually incapable of tackling relatively large homopolymers with repeating structures like RNAs. This study presents a heteronuclear-resolved version of those NOESY experiments, in which magnetization transfers between the aqueous solvent and the nucleic acid protons are controlled by selecting specific chemical shift combinations of a coupled 1H-15N spin pair. This selective control effectively leads to a pseudo-3D version of HSQC-NOESY, but with cross-peaks enhanced by ∼2-5× as compared with conventional 2D NOESY counterparts. The enhanced signal sensitivity as well as access to both 15N-1H and 1H-1H NOESY dimensions can greatly facilitate RNA assignments and secondary structure determinations, as demonstrated here with the analysis of genome fragments derived from the SARS-CoV-2 virus.


Subject(s)
Magnetic Phenomena , Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy , RNA, Viral/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Temperature
3.
Angew Chem Int Ed Engl ; 60(21): 11884-11891, 2021 05 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1384108

ABSTRACT

2D NOESY plays a central role in structural NMR spectroscopy. We have recently discussed methods that rely on solvent-driven exchanges to enhance NOE correlations between exchangeable and non-exchangeable protons in nucleic acids. Such methods, however, fail when trying to establish connectivities within pools of labile protons. This study introduces an alternative that also enhances NOEs between such labile sites, based on encoding a priori selected peaks by selective saturations. The resulting selective magnetization transfer (SMT) experiment proves particularly useful for enhancing the imino-imino cross-peaks in RNAs, which is a first step in the NMR resolution of these structures. The origins of these enhancements are discussed, and their potential is demonstrated on RNA fragments derived from the genome of SARS-CoV-2, recorded with better sensitivity and an order of magnitude faster than conventional 2D counterparts.


Subject(s)
Nuclear Magnetic Resonance, Biomolecular/methods , Protons , RNA, Viral/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Magnetic Phenomena , RNA, Viral/chemistry
4.
Biosens Bioelectron ; 192: 113536, 2021 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1330665

ABSTRACT

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic stresses the need for widely available diagnostic tests for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in individuals. Due to the limited availability of vaccines, diagnostic assays which are cheap, easy-to-use at the point-of-need, reliable and fast, are currently the only way to control the pandemic situation. Here we present a diagnostic assay for the detection of pathogen-specific nucleic acids based on changes of the magnetic response of magnetic nanoparticles: The target-mediated hybridization of modified nanoparticles leads to an increase in the hydrodynamic radius. This resulting change in the magnetic behaviour in an ac magnetic field can be measured via magnetic particle spectroscopy (MPS), providing a viable tool for the accurate detection of target nucleic acids. In this work we show that single stranded DNA can be detected in a concentration-dependent manner by these means. In addition to detecting synthetic DNA with an arbitrary sequence in a concentration down to 500 pM, we show that RNA and SARS-CoV-2-specific DNA as well as saliva as a sample medium can be used for an accurate assay. These proof-of-principle experiments show the potential of MPS based assays for the reliable and fast diagnostics of pathogens like SARS-CoV-2 in a point-of-need fashion without the need of complex sample preparation.


Subject(s)
Biosensing Techniques , COVID-19 , Nucleic Acids , Humans , Magnetic Phenomena , Pandemics , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity , Spectrum Analysis
5.
ACS Sens ; 6(3): 1270-1278, 2021 03 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1101622

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance and urgent need for rapid and accurate diagnostic tests for COVID-19 detection and screening. The objective of this work was to develop a simple immunosensor for rapid and high sensitivity measurements of SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein in serum. This assay is based on a unique sensing scheme utilizing dually-labeled magnetic nanobeads for immunomagnetic enrichment and signal amplification. This immunosensor is integrated onto a microfluidic chip, which offers the advantages of minimal sample and reagent consumption, simplified sample handling, and enhanced detection sensitivity. The functionality of this immunosensor was validated by using it to detect SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein, which could be detected at concentrations as low as 50 pg/mL in whole serum and 10 pg/mL in 5× diluted serum. We also adapted this assay onto a handheld smartphone-based diagnostic device that could detect SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein at concentrations as low as 230 pg/mL in whole serum and 100 pg/mL in 5× diluted serum. Lastly, we assessed the capability of this immunosensor to diagnose COVID-19 infection by testing clinical serum specimens, which revealed its ability to accurately distinguish PCR-positive COVID-19 patients from healthy, uninfected individuals based on SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein serum levels. To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first demonstration of rapid (<1 h) SARS-CoV-2 antigen quantification in whole serum samples. The ability to rapidly detect SARS-CoV-2 protein biomarkers with high sensitivity in very small (<50 µL) serum samples makes this platform a promising tool for point-of-care COVID-19 testing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/blood , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Electrochemical Techniques , Humans , Immunoassay , Magnetic Phenomena , Microfluidics
6.
Talanta ; 227: 122207, 2021 May 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1078201

ABSTRACT

Since December 2019, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused millions of deaths and seriously threatened the safety of human life; indeed, this situation is worsening and many people are infected with the new coronavirus every day. Therefore, it is very important to understand patients' degree of infection and infection history through antibody testing. Such information is useful also for the government and hospitals to formulate reasonable prevention policies and treatment plans. In this paper, we develop a lateral flow immunoassay (LFIA) method based on superparamagnetic nanoparticles (SMNPs) and a giant magnetoresistance (GMR) sensing system for the simultaneously quantitative detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin M (IgM) and G (IgG). A simple and time-effective co-precipitation method was utilized to prepare the SMNPs, which have good dispersibility and magnetic property, with an average diameter of 68 nm. The Internet of Medical Things-supported GMR could transmit medical data to a smartphone through the Bluetooth protocol, making patient information available for medical staff. The proposed GMR system, based on SMNP-supported LFIA, has an outstanding advantage in cost-effectiveness and time-efficiency, and is easy to operate. We believe that the suggested GMR based LFIA system will be very useful for medical staff to analyze and to preserve as a record of infection in COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Immunoassay/methods , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin M/blood , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Immobilized/chemistry , Antibodies, Immobilized/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Cattle , Cell Phone , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Internet of Things , Limit of Detection , Magnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles/chemistry , Magnetic Phenomena
7.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 13(7): 7966-7976, 2021 Feb 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1075146

ABSTRACT

Nowadays, there is an increasing demand for more accessible routine diagnostics for patients with respect to high accuracy, ease of use, and low cost. However, the quantitative and high accuracy bioassays in large hospitals and laboratories usually require trained technicians and equipment that is both bulky and expensive. In addition, the multistep bioassays and long turnaround time could severely affect the disease surveillance and control especially in pandemics such as influenza and COVID-19. In view of this, a portable, quantitative bioassay device will be valuable in regions with scarce medical resources and help relieve burden on local healthcare systems. Herein, we introduce the MagiCoil diagnostic device, an inexpensive, portable, quantitative, and rapid bioassay platform based on the magnetic particle spectrometer (MPS) technique. MPS detects the dynamic magnetic responses of magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) and uses the harmonics from oscillating MNPs as metrics for sensitive and quantitative bioassays. This device does not require trained technicians to operate and employs a fully automatic, one-step, and wash-free assay with a user friendly smartphone interface. Using a streptavidin-biotin binding system as a model, we show that the detection limit of the current portable device for streptavidin is 64 nM (equal to 5.12 pmole). In addition, this MPS technique is very versatile and allows for the detection of different diseases just by changing the surface modifications on MNPs. Although MPS-based bioassays show high sensitivities as reported in many literatures, at the current stage, this portable device faces insufficient sensitivity and needs further improvements. It is foreseen that this kind of portable device can transform the multistep, laboratory-based bioassays to one-step field testing in nonclinical settings such as schools, homes, offices, etc.


Subject(s)
Biological Assay , Magnetite Nanoparticles/chemistry , Smartphone , Streptavidin/analysis , Biological Assay/instrumentation , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Hydrodynamics , Influenza, Human/diagnosis , Magnetic Phenomena , Particle Size , Surface Properties
8.
Zhongguo Yi Liao Qi Xie Za Zhi ; 45(1): 22-25, 2021 Feb 08.
Article in Chinese | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1058552

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: In the context of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the subject was designed to develop a new tracheal intubation device based on magnetic navigation technology to improve the success rate of tracheal intubation and reduce the risk of occupational exposure of medical staff. METHODS: The new tracheal intubation device was designed with the uniqueness of the magnetic field environment and magnetic steering of magnetic navigation technology. And preliminary magnetic navigation tracheal intubation experiments were performed on the tracheal intubation simulator. RESULTS: Magnetic navigation tracheal intubation can successfully implement tracheal intubation, and the time required is lower than that of traditional laryngoscopy. CONCLUSIONS: The tracheal intubation based on magnetic navigation technology is feasible, with high efficiency and easy operation. That is expected to be widely used for tracheal intubation during treatment of patients outside the hospital in the future. At the same time, magnetic navigation endotracheal intubation technology will be the key technology for the development of endotracheal intubation robots.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/therapy , Equipment Design , Feasibility Studies , Humans , Intubation, Intratracheal , Magnetic Phenomena , SARS-CoV-2 , Technology
9.
ACS Sens ; 6(3): 703-708, 2021 03 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1047926

ABSTRACT

Immunological methods to detect SARS-CoV-2 seroconversion in humans are important to track COVID-19 cases and the humoral response to SARS-CoV-2 infections and immunization to future vaccines. The aim of this work was to develop a simple chromogenic magnetic bead-based immunoassay which allows rapid, inexpensive, and quantitative detection of human antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in serum, plasma, or blood. Recombinant 6xHis-tagged SARS-CoV-2 Nucleocapsid protein was mobilized on the surface of Ni2+ magnetic beads and challenged with serum or blood samples obtained from controls or COVID-19 cases. The beads were washed, incubated with anti-human IgG-HPR conjugate, and immersed into a solution containing a chromogenic HPR substrate. Bead transfer and homogenization between solutions was aided by a simple low-cost device. The method was validated by two independent laboratories, and the performance to detect SARS-CoV-2 seroconversion in humans was in the same range as obtained using the gold standard immunoassays ELISA and Luminex, though requiring only a fraction of consumables, instrumentation, time to deliver results, and volume of sample. Furthermore, the results obtained with the method described can be visually interpreted without compromising accuracy as demonstrated by validation at a point-of-care unit. The magnetic bead immunoassay throughput can be customized on demand and is readily adapted to be used with any other 6xHis tagged protein or peptide as antigen to track other diseases.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19/diagnosis , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Magnetic Phenomena
10.
ACS Sens ; 6(3): 976-984, 2021 03 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1047925

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) threatens global medical systems and economies and rules our daily living life. Controlling the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 has become one of the most important and urgent strategies throughout the whole world. As of October 2020, there have not yet been any medicines or therapies to be effective against SARS-CoV-2. Thus, rapid and sensitive diagnostics is the most important measures to control the outbreak of SARS-CoV-2. Homogeneous biosensing based on magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) is one of the most promising approaches for rapid and highly sensitive detection of biomolecules. This paper proposes an approach for rapid and sensitive detection of SARS-CoV-2 with functionalized MNPs via the measurement of their magnetic response in an ac magnetic field. For proof of concept, mimic SARS-CoV-2 consisting of spike proteins and polystyrene beads are used for experiments. Experimental results demonstrate that the proposed approach allows the rapid detection of mimic SARS-CoV-2 with a limit of detection of 0.084 nM (5.9 fmole). The proposed approach has great potential for designing a low-cost and point-of-care device for rapid and sensitive diagnostics of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Magnetite Nanoparticles/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Biosensing Techniques , Magnetic Phenomena , Polystyrenes/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
11.
Expert Opin Drug Deliv ; 18(5): 531-534, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-975165
12.
PLoS One ; 15(12): e0238010, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-961459

ABSTRACT

Multiplexed bead-based assays that use Luminex® xMAP® technology have become popular for measuring antibodies against proteins of interest in many fields, including malaria and more recently SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19. There are currently two formats that are widely used: non-magnetic beads or magnetic beads. Data are lacking regarding the comparability of results obtained using these two types of beads, and for assays run on different instruments. Whilst non-magnetic beads can only be run on flow-based instruments (such as the Luminex® 100/200™ or Bio-Plex® 200), magnetic beads can be run on both these and the newer MAGPIX® instruments. In this study we utilized a panel of purified recombinant Plasmodium vivax proteins and samples from malaria-endemic areas to measure P. vivax-specific IgG responses using different combinations of beads and instruments. We directly compared: i) non-magnetic versus magnetic beads run on a Bio-Plex® 200, ii) magnetic beads run on the Bio-Plex® 200 versus MAGPIX® and iii) non-magnetic beads run on a Bio-Plex® 200 versus magnetic beads run on the MAGPIX®. We also performed an external comparison of our optimized assay. We observed that IgG antibody responses, measured against our panel of P. vivax proteins, were moderately-strongly correlated in all three of our comparisons (pearson r>0.5 for 18/19 proteins), however higher amounts of protein were required for coupling to magnetic beads. Our external comparison indicated that results generated in different laboratories using the same coupled beads are also highly comparable (pearson r>0.7), particularly if a reference standard curve is used.


Subject(s)
Cell Separation/methods , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Immunomagnetic Separation/methods , Antigens, Protozoan/immunology , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Magnetic Phenomena , Malaria/immunology , Malaria, Vivax/immunology , Male , Microspheres , Papua New Guinea/epidemiology , Plasmodium vivax/immunology , Protozoan Proteins/immunology , Technology
13.
Viruses ; 12(8)2020 08 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-713633

ABSTRACT

Rapid large-scale testing is essential for controlling the ongoing pandemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The standard diagnostic pipeline for testing SARS-CoV-2 presence in patients with an ongoing infection is predominantly based on pharyngeal swabs, from which the viral RNA is extracted using commercial kits, followed by reverse transcription and quantitative PCR detection. As a result of the large demand for testing, commercial RNA extraction kits may be limited and, alternatively, non-commercial protocols are needed. Here, we provide a magnetic bead RNA extraction protocol that is predominantly based on in-house made reagents and is performed in 96-well plates supporting large-scale testing. Magnetic bead RNA extraction was benchmarked against the commercial QIAcube extraction platform. Comparable viral RNA detection sensitivity and specificity were obtained by fluorescent and colorimetric reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) using a primer set targeting the N gene, as well as RT-qPCR using a primer set targeting the E gene, showing that the RNA extraction protocol presented here can be combined with a variety of detection methods at high throughput. Importantly, the presented diagnostic workflow can be quickly set up in a laboratory without access to an automated pipetting robot.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/chemistry , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Humans , Magnetic Phenomena , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques/methods , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , RNA, Viral/genetics , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , Reverse Transcription , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity
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