Temperature modulation and quadrature detection for selective titration of two-state exchanging reactants.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Analytical chemistry, Volume 83, Issue 7, p.2476-84 (2011)


KINETICS; Temperature; THERMODYNAMICS; Titrimetry


Biological samples exhibit huge molecular diversity over large concentration ranges. Titrating a given compound in such mixtures is often difficult, and innovative strategies emphasizing selectivity are thus demanded. To overcome limitations inherent to thermodynamics, we here present a generic technique where discrimination relies on the dynamics of interaction between the target of interest and a probe introduced in excess. Considering an ensemble of two-state exchanging reactants submitted to temperature modulation, we first demonstrate that the amplitude of the out-of-phase concentration oscillations is maximum for every compound involved in a reaction whose equilibrium constant is equal to unity and whose relaxation time is equal to the inverse of the excitation angular frequency. Taking advantage of this feature, we next devise a highly specific detection protocol and validate it using a microfabricated resistive heater and an epifluorescence microscope, as well as labeled oligonucleotides to model species displaying various dynamic properties. As expected, quantification of a sought for strand is obtained even if interfering reagents are present in similar amounts. Moreover, our approach does not require any separation and is compatible with imaging. It could then benefit some of the numerous binding assays performed every day in life sciences.

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