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Environmental Monitoring by Fluorescence Induction and Detection

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Yeast detects chemicals which damage DNA

A device using yeast has been developed to detect the chemicals which may damage deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and cause cancer in humans.


This device has several advantages over existing tests which currently only measure survival rates in bacteria. Yeast is ideal in detecting cancerous chemicals because its DNA-damage response system is remarkably similar to human cells. It can also be used to detect other types of damage such as oxidative stress with a high degree of accuracy. The device can be effectively used in continuous, high intensity screening programmes. DNA damage to yeast cells is detected by using a green fluorescent protein reporter that is abundant in living cells and reagent free. The device is highly efficient where DNA-damaging agents can be detected within one hour and simultaneous measurements can be recorded. With further research into the causes of cancer, the search for a cure becomes more refined. This device, which detects cancerous chemicals can also be used to detect dangerous components in water supplies and for compound screening.

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