NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER:05 X11.02-9111
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Human Health Countermeasures
PROPOSAL TITLE:Parallel Detection of Multiple Biomarkers during Spaceflight

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc.
44 Hunt St
Watertown ,MA 02472 - 4699
(617) 926 - 1167

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Daniel B. Hall, PhD
44 Hunt St
Watertown, MA  02472 -4699
(617) 926 - 1167

Maintaining the health of astronauts during extended spaceflight is critical to the success of the mission. Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc. (RMD) proposes an instrument to monitor astronauts' physiological responses to stress, microgravity, radiation, infection, and pharmaceutical agents through detection of multiple biological markers. This will be accomplished under conditions of microgravity, within the weight, size and power requirements of space missions, and with minimal human intervention. One representative biomarker of interest is 8-oxo-dG that serves as an indicator of oxidative DNA damage from radiation, chemicals, inflammation, and by-products of metabolism. Upon repair of the damaged DNA, 8-oxo-dG is excreted into the urine where it may be conveniently monitored. However, serious obstacles to detection and quantification arise due to the low amounts present and the complex chemical composition of urine. Current techniques suffer from at least one of the following shortcomings: they are slow and labor-intensive, require complex instrumentation and a highly-trained operator, cannot be easily multiplexed to monitor many analytes, consume large amounts of reagents, and are not compatible for use under microgravity. We will overcome these limitations by incorporating all analytical steps into a single microfluidic chip. Our system will utilize affinity purification and electrochemical detection.

This proposal focuses on biological markers of oxidative stress such as are formed upon exposure to radiation. Our goal is to produce an instrument that can monitor the daily biological effects of radiation on astronauts as a function of changes in exposure due to solar flares or extravehicular activity, for example. In addition, the amount of protection afforded by antioxidants present in the diet or given as nutritional supplements and pharmaceuticals can be monitored. The operating principles of our instrument are general and will be applicable to a wide variety of biological markers and pharmaceutical agents of interest to NASA

Measurement of biological markers of oxidation is important because they have been linked to many degenerative conditions such as smoking, aging, cancer, atherosclerosis, and other diseases. The use of antioxidants to counter these conditions has been widely proposed but clinical data demonstrating their effectiveness is limited and often contradictory. Our instrument would be useful for these studies because it could provide sufficient throughput for the large number of subjects necessary at reasonable cost, superior accuracy compared to the standard ELISA assay, and convenient analysis of multiple biomarkers and antioxidants.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Biomedical and Life Support
Biomolecular Sensors

Form Printed on 09-19-05 13:12