Our research group is focused on the development of sensitive and selective analytical methods for the detection of peptides, amino acids, neurotransmitters, and drugs in biological fluids. Release, transport and metabolism of these substances can be investigated in vitro using a cell culture model or in vivo using microdialysis sampling.
Due to the small sample volumes generated, column methods including liquid chromatography (LC) and capillary electrophoresis (CE) have been employed for the separation of the analytes of interest. Capillary electrophoresis is being investigated due to its ability to perform fast, highly efficient separations. Electrochemistry (EC), mass spectrometry (MS) and laser induced fluorescence (LIF) detection modes are being explored. CE can also be miniaturized to yield a portable separation-based sensor. The development of such sensors for near real time monitoring of drugs and neurotransmitters is a goal of our group.
Our research takes place at the interface between neurobiology, analytical chemistry and engineering, therefore students who work on these projects have the opportunity to learn to communicate and collaborate across these disciplines.