Univerisitat Rovira i Virgili, www.urv.es

Researchers at the Univerisitat Rovira i Virgili, the public university of Tarragonna in Spain, have designed a field-effect transistor made partially from carbon nanotubes. The transistor can selectively detect and quantify the amount of infectious fungus cells (Candida albicans) in a sample of blood or mucous secretion. When Candida antibodies and a sample are placed on the FET, interactions between the fungus cells and antibodies change the device’s electric current. This let researchers detect the fungus and estimate accurately how much of it is present. The new biosensor will help detect fungus infections using small blood samples and could lead to other infection-specific sensors.