The Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems (CDN) was established at Marshall University in August of 2010 with the goal of developing novel molecular-based diagnostic tests that can be used by individuals and public health systems to facilitate personalized medicine. The primary disease focus of the Center is on those disorders that are the most prevalent in West Virginia and Appalachia and include cardiovascular disorders, cancer and sepsis. The center is highly interdisciplinary in nature and is staffed by scientists and researchers with expertise in the basic sciences, nanotechnology, and clinical medicine.
The CDN was established in 2010 with a grant of $1.6M from the U.S. Department of Energy, and to date has received another approximately $2M in research grants. Thus far, CDN has filed 12 patent disclosures and has 2 patents pending. This funding now supports 8 full time staff positions.
Projects in the Basic Science Division include the identification of new biomarkers that could be used to track muscle wasting, cardiovascular dysfunction and the development of new sensor platforms that could be used to interrogate blood or serum samples for makers of chronic disease. Other successes include the ongoing development of the Translational Research Division whose mission is to facilitate the development of new clinical diagnostic techniques and novel clinical therapeutics. The goal of the Nanochemistry Division is to develop new types of nanomaterials and sensors for the rapid measurement of biomarkers in minimally invasive fluids (blood, saliva, urine) that can be used for the early assessment of disease or infection and drug efficacy. In addition to fabrication, other work in the Nanochemistry Division is centered on developing computer models to better understand and predict how different types of molecules may interact with sensor surfaces. Collaborations here include work with Michigan Technological University, the University of South Carolina, the University of Delaware, Walter Reed Hospital, and Takasaki University of Health and Welfare. Efforts within the Educational Division include the development of short courses, training programs, and lectures to educate the public about the promise of nanotechnology and its potential effects on society.
Director, Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems