Detection of bacteria with carbohydrate-functionalized fluorescent polymers.

TitleDetection of bacteria with carbohydrate-functionalized fluorescent polymers.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2004
AuthorsDisney, MD, Zheng, J, Swager, TM, Seeberger, PH
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Date Publishedoct
KeywordsAnimals, Biosensing Techniques, Biosensing Techniques: methods, Carbodiimides, Carbodiimides: chemistry, Carbohydrate Metabolism, Carbohydrates, Carbohydrates: chemical synthesis, Carbohydrates: chemistry, Confocal, Erythrocytes, Erythrocytes: drug effects, Escherichia coli, Escherichia coli: isolation & purification, Escherichia coli: metabolism, Ethylamines, Ethylamines: chemistry, Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer, Fluorescent Dyes, Fluorescent Dyes: chemical synthesis, Fluorescent Dyes: chemistry, Galactosides, Galactosides: chemistry, Galactosides: metabolism, Hemagglutination Tests, Mannosides, Mannosides: chemistry, Mannosides: metabolism, Microscopy, Polymers, Polymers: chemical synthesis, Polymers: chemistry, Sheep

Many pathogens that infect humans use cell surface carbohydrates as receptors to facilitate cell-cell adhesion. The hallmark of these interactions is their multivalency, or the simultaneous occurrence of multiple interactions. We have used a carbohydrate-functionalized fluorescent polymer, which displays many carbohydrate ligands on a single polymer chain, to allow for multivalent detection of pathogens. Incubation of a mannose-functionalized polymer with Escherichia coli yields brightly fluorescent aggregates of bacteria. These results show that carbohydrate-functionalized fluorescent polymers are a versatile detection method for bacteria. Future design of detectors for other pathogens only requires information on the carbohydrates bound by the organisms, which has been exhaustively reported in the literature.