A new technique developed by a University of Central Florida chemist will help physicians more quickly identify the bacterial infections patients have so they can be treated in hours instead of days.
The technique uses gold nanoparticles coated with a sugar and a protein that binds to sugars. Meanwhile, a variety of antibiotics are placed in the same solution. A spectrophotometer reads optical variations in the gold nanoparticle solution as the sugar and protein shift , which in turn demonstrate which antibiotics effectively halt bacteria growth and which ones do not. Results can be obtained within a couple of hours, in contrast to the traditional methods, which can take days to complete. And hundreds of samples can be tested at once using this technique because the amount of bacteria and antibiotic needed is small.
The research paper is published in the journal 'Analytical Chemistry' but there is a summary here.