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Assessing Water Quality with a Molecular Brain

Julius Lucks and his team have unveiled a device that can sense water contamination levels in minutes, helping reduce risk for those relying on compromised water sources.  The device operates by using cell-free molecules to identify contaminants before feeding the results through a genetic network designed to work like a circuit.  Contamination up to certain thresholds will cause one or more of the eight display tubes to glow green, allowing users to assess potential exposure quickly and easily.  The device, which was described in a Nature Chemical Biology article last week, iterates on Lucks’ earlier ROSALIND sensor through the introduction of the genetic network, and has been dubbed ROSALIND 2.0.  Learn more here.
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