8B Bio-nano interactions for biosensing

The aim of this programme is to quantify biological systems, solidify the international lead of the Dutch single-molecule biophysics community and build the basis for novel generations of biosensor technologies based on biomolecular interactions, in order to enable the sensitive, accurate and rapid measurement of the concentration and function of biological molecules in complex biological matrices.

This programme consists of three clusters:

In Cluster I tools are developed that manipulate particles and biomolecules on a nanoscale to probe biological interactions in vitro. The major scientific challenge is to quantify interactions in complex biological systems and to link them to biological function. Discovering these relationships will give new insights in biological processes based on quantitative measurable quantities. The tools will increase specificity in biosensor technology and allow development of a next generation biosensors that probe functionality.

Cluster 2 aims to exploit the state-of-the-art nanobiotechnological tools developed in Cluster 1 to sensitively probe interactions between biomolecules. Using these powerful tools an unprecedented detailed fundamental understanding of the action of key proteins in genome organization, the immune system and signal transduction will be gained. Moreover, these tools will facilitate the identification and optimisation of chemical drugs, peptide-antibiotics and optimization of regulatory pathways, and yield sophisticated antibody-based biomolecular detection strategies.

Cluster 3 will investigate how to achieve specific and sensitive detection using novel combinations of biotechnology and device-based nanotechnologies. The cluster will collaborate with the other two clusters within the programme, in biotechnological aspects (e.g. biological model systems) as well as in device-based nanotechnology aspects (e.g. physical tools for the manipulation and detection of biomolecules). The projects in this cluster aim to form a bridge between groundbreaking academic research and application-oriented industrial research, in particular to translate single-molecule based technologies into applicable biosensing systems.

Back to theme 8: Bio-nano


Programme Director:
Prof. dr. ir. Gijs J.L. Wuite (VU University Amsterdam)