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Research and development of new biosensor reagents using aptamers


We aim to realize a society where anyone can easily measure food safety and health condition that are difficult to check with simple tests.

Exploiting the cutting edge of ICT and biotechnology, we are driving research and development of new biosensor reagents using aptamers. Biosensors do not require any complex analysis procedure or large-scale analyzer, allowing on-site measurements to be made anywhere.

Measurements easy for anyone

Biosensors are intended to facilitate measurements, which only experts could conduct in the past, so as to make them easy for anyone.

One example of possible application is a paper strip to which a biosensor is applied. The stress level can be measured by putting a few drops of saliva or urine on that paper strip.

"Democratization" of measurements by biotechnology

Food safety

Measurement of food poisoning bacteria

Health information

Stress level measurement

Infectious disease

Virus detection

About aptamers

DNA, which is the blueprint for every living organism, and RNA and other nucleic acids produced by it are composed of four types of elements. How these substances are arranged (sequence) represents genetic information. In the 1990s, a technique was established for discovering the nucleic acid sequence that specifically binds to a target substance from among various nucleic acid sequences (SELEX technique). Such nucleic acid sequences are called aptamers.

Key reference literature

Minagawa H, Shimizu A, Kataoka Y, Kuwahara M, Kato S, Horii K, Shiratori I, Waga I. Fluorescence Polarization-Based Rapid Detection System for Salivary Biomarkers Using Modified DNA Aptamers Containing Base-Appended Bases. Anal. Chem. 2020; 92(2):1780-1787.

Chin DP, Shiratori I, Shimizu A, Kato K, Mii M, Waga I. Generation of brilliant green fluorescent petunia plants by using a new and potent fluorescent protein transgene. Sci Rep. 2018 Nov 8;8(1):16556.

Kaneko N, Horii K, Akitomi J, Kato S, Shiratori I, Waga I. An Aptamer-Based Biosensor for Direct, Label-Free Detection of Melamine in Raw Milk. Sensors (Basel). 2018 Sep 25;18(10).

Shimizu A, Shiratori I, Horii K, Waga I. Molecular evolution of versatile derivatives from a GFP-like protein in the marine copepod Chiridius poppei. PLoS One. 2017 Jul 11;12(7):e0181186.

Minagawa H, Onodera K, Fujita H, Sakamoto T, Akitomi J, Kaneko N, Shiratori I, Kuwahara M, Horii K, Waga I. Selection, Characterization and Application of Artificial DNA Aptamer Containing Appended Bases with Sub-nanomolar Affinity for a Salivary Biomarker. Sci Rep. 2017 Mar 3;7:42716.

Shiratori I, Akitomi J, Boltz DA, Horii K, Furuichi M, Waga I. Selection of DNA aptamers that bind to influenza A viruses with high affinity and broad subtype specificity. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014 Jan 3;443(1):37-41.