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Quantitative detection of bacterial endotoxin by novel nanotechnological approaches

Project description

Innovative endotoxin detection using nanotechnology

Safety regulations require the unbiased quantitative detection of bacterial endotoxins in the products intended for medical use and drug development. The current Limulus amoebocyte lysate (LAL) assays have reliability limitations and cannot be applied to all products and substances. Funded by the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions programme, the ENDONANO project will exploit a novel concept based on the capacity of metal nanoparticles to adsorb endotoxins as well as detection methods based on molecular beacons. The aim is to develop an endotoxin quantitation assay that works in complex matrices and a wide range of conditions. ENDONANO will train four PhD researchers, providing courses in scientific, technical and transferrable skills, participation in scientific events, and networking.


ENDONANO (Quantitative detection of bacterial endotoxin by novel nanotechnological approaches) addresses a key regulatory and safety issue, i.e. the unbiased quantitative detection of bacterial endotoxin in products for medical use and in drug development and toxicological studies. The currently adopted LAL assays are reliable only in limited conditions and prone to interference at several levels, and therefore cannot be applied to all products and substances. ENDONANO will exploit new concepts, based on the capacity of metal nanoparticles to adsorb endotoxin, and new detection methods, based on molecular beacons, for developing novel assays to quantitatively detect endotoxin in complex matrices and in a wide range of conditions. The scientific and technological goals of ENDONANO include: 1. Investigating the capacity of endotoxin to specifically inducing inflammatory reactions in human primary blood cells; 2. Developing new methods based on endotoxin capture by metal nanoparticles in complex matrices (biological fluids, emulsions, gels, etc.); 3. Designing and implementing signal generation and detection methods for the quantitative endotoxin measurement; 4. Planning assay prototypes to be developed and validated for commercial purposes. ENDONANO will train 4 PhD students in an overarching training programme that will include training-by-research, courses of technical, scientific, and transferrable skills, active participation to public scientific events, and intense intersectoral networking. The ENDONANO consortium encompasses three academic institutions with strong expertise in inflammation, advanced biosensing, and top expertise in nanotechnology and use of nanoparticles for modulating bacterial functions, two SMEs expert in development and commercialisation of diagnostic detection assays and one biotech company specialised in (magnetic) microbead technology, and two Participant Organisations (SMEs). All have proven experience in higher education and training,


Net EU contribution
€ 261 499,68
00185 Roma

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Centro (IT) Lazio Roma
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 261 499,68

Participants (6)

Partners (2)