Methods in Bioanalytical Chemistry
This one-semester course provides an introduction to classic and modern approaches of chemical analysis of biological systems. The course is organized around detection of analytes ranging from small molecules and proteins, to cells, to structured materials. In particular we will focus on immunoassay techniques: ELISA, bead-based assays, and surface plasmon resonance for analytes in solution; ELISpot for cell secretions; flow cytometry for cells and beads; and immunostaining for biomaterials and tissue samples. Where appropriate, we will also discuss nucleic acid analysis and miniaturization by microfluidics.
The overarching goal of the course is for students to attain intuition and maturity in their approach to qualitative and quantitative analysis of biological phenomena. For each technique, we will discuss the underlying concepts, standard methods, potential pitfalls and common errors, and current applications in the primary literature. At the end of the course, students will choose a topic of interest to them and propose an experiment using one or more of these techniques to address an unanswered question.