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One of the key problems in microfabrication and especially nanofabrication applied to biology is materials selection. Proper materials must have mechanical stability and the ability to hermetically bond to other surfaces, yet not bind biological molecules. They must also be wettable by water and have good optical properties. In this article, we review some of the attempts to find materials for micro- and nanofluidic systems in biological applications that satisfy these rather conflicting constraints.We discuss the materials properties that make poly (dimethylsiloxane) or non-elastomeric materials more or less suitable for particular applications in biology. We also explore the effects and the importance of surface treatments for integrating biological objects into microfabricated and nanofabricated fluidic devices.
We have synthesized rare-earth doped sub-10 nm diameter upconverting yttrium oxide based nanophosphors by flame spray pyrolysis. We have investigated the emitted visible fluorescence of the sub-10nm nanophosphors under both infrared excitation and electron excitation, and observed comparable narrow band emission spectra. The viability of the nanoparticles for biological imaging was confirmed by imaging the digestive system of the nematode worm C. elegans in the upconversion mode. We have surface functionalized the nanophosphors making them suitable for bio labeling.
The purpose of the study was to determine the incidence and risk factors for the acquisition of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in our community.
This study used a cross-sectional design to assess patients colonized or infected with MRSA.
The study population consisted of residents of London, Ontario, Canada, who were identified as MRSA-positive for the first time in 1997.
All acute- and chronic-care hospitals, long-term healthcare facilities, and community physicians' offices in the city of London participated in the study.
Main Outcome Measure:
Incidence of MRSA in the community, risk factors for acquisition, especially previous hospitalization over a defined period, and strain type were evaluated.
In 1997, 331 residents of London were newly identified as MRSA-positive, representing an annual incidence of 100/100,000 persons (95% confidence interval, 88.8-110.7). Thirty-one (9.4%) individuals were not healthcare-facility patients in the previous month, and 11 (3.3%), 10 (3.0%), and 6 (1.8%) individuals had no such contact in the previous 3, 6, and 12 months, respectively. One hundred seventy-seven strains, including five of the isolates from patients with no healthcare-facility contact in the previous year, were typed. One hundred sixty (90.3%) of these isolates, including all typed strains from patients with no healthcare facility contact, belonged to a single clone.
These findings demonstrate that the incidence of MRSA is higher than previously reported and that hospital contact is the single most important risk factor for the acquisition of MRSA in our community. Screening for MRSA in previously hospitalized patients at the time of hospitalization may reduce nosocomial spread and indirectly reduce the incidence of MRSA in the community.
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