International Research Experience for Undergraduates

Otonye Braide

2002 Participant


Enantio-Separation of Drugs with Antibody Immobilized Silica Nanotubes Attached to Alumina Membranes

A junior at Lincoln University, Pennsylvania, Otonye Braide is currently working with Prof. Charles R. Martin at the Department of Chemistry, University of Florida. They have pioneered an approach called template synthesis, which can be used for preparation of nanotubes of various shapes, sizes and materials. For example using template synthesis, we and other groups have synthesized nanotubes of metals (gold, silver, platinum etc.), semiconductors (SiO2, TiO2 etc.) and polymers (polypyrrole, polyaniline) of pore diameters ranging from a few nanometers to micron sizes. It is a very powerful technique for nano-material synthesis. These nanotube membranes have many potential applications in nanoelectronics, nano-optoelectronics, as well as in biochemical and biomedical applications such as enzyme encapsulation, DNA transfection and drug delivery.

Working alongside Dr. Punit Kohli, a post-doctoral fellow, Otonye has been conducting experiments so as to develop techniques for the enantio-separation of drugs with antibody immobilized silica nanotubes attached to alumina membranes. Recently, she had synthesized silica nanotubes into porous alumina membranes via sol-gel chemistry. Reacting silanol groups on silica with 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane, followed by reaction of biotinamidocaproate n-hydroxysuccinimideester (NHS) with the amine surface yielded biotinated surface. This was confirmed by attachment of streptavidin coated microspheres to biotinated surfaces using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM). She has also successfully derivatized the alumina membranes with succinic anhydride terminated silane for electroless gold plating of alumina membranes. This yielded gold nanotubes of ~ 200 nm diameters and of ~ 60 microns in length.