Publications by authors named "Thomas Elssner"

5 Publications

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Multiplex Immunoassay Techniques for On-Site Detection of Security Sensitive Toxins.

Toxins (Basel) 2020 11 20;12(11). Epub 2020 Nov 20.

Bruker Optik GmbH, Permoserstr, 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.

Biological toxins are a heterogeneous group of high molecular as well as low molecular weight toxins produced by living organisms. Due to their physical and logistical properties, biological toxins are very attractive to terrorists for use in acts of bioterrorism. Therefore, among the group of biological toxins, several are categorized as security relevant, e.g., botulinum neurotoxins, staphylococcal enterotoxins, abrin, ricin or saxitoxin. Additionally, several security sensitive toxins also play a major role in natural food poisoning outbreaks. For a prompt response to a potential bioterrorist attack using biological toxins, first responders need reliable, easy-to-use and highly sensitive methodologies for on-site detection of the causative agent. Therefore, the aim of this review is to present on-site immunoassay platforms for multiplex detection of biological toxins. Furthermore, we introduce several commercially available detection technologies specialized for mobile or on-site identification of security sensitive toxins.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/toxins12110727DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7699850PMC
November 2020

An Electrochemical Fiveplex Biochip Assay Based on Anti-Idiotypic Antibodies for Fast On-Site Detection of Bioterrorism Relevant Low Molecular Weight Toxins.

Toxins (Basel) 2019 11 28;11(12). Epub 2019 Nov 28.

Bruker Daltonik GmbH, Permoserstr. 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.

Modern threats of bioterrorism force the need for multiple detection of biothreat agents to determine the presence or absence of such agents in suspicious samples. Here, we present a rapid electrochemical fiveplex biochip screening assay for detection of the bioterrorism relevant low molecular weight toxins saxitoxin, microcystin-LR, T-2 toxin, roridin A and aflatoxin B1 relying on anti-idiotypic antibodies as epitope-mimicking reagents. The proposed method avoids the use of potentially harmful toxin-protein conjugates usually mandatory for competitive immunoassays. The biochip is processed and analyzed on the automated and portable detection platform pBDi within 13.4 min. The fiveplex biochip assay revealed toxin group specificity to multiple congeners. Limits of detection were 1.2 ng/mL, 1.5 ng/mL, 0.4 ng/mL, 0.5 ng/mL and 0.6 ng/mL for saxitoxin, microcystin-LR, T-2 toxin, roridin A or aflatoxin B1, respectively. The robustness of the fiveplex biochip for real samples was demonstrated by detecting saxitoxin, microcystin-LR, HT-2 toxin, roridin A and aflatoxin B1 in contaminated human blood serum without elaborate sample preparation. Recovery rates were between 52-115% covering a wide concentration range. Thus, the developed robust fiveplex biochip assay can be used on-site to quickly detect one or multiple low molecular weight toxins in a single run.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/toxins11120696DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6950599PMC
November 2019

Electrochemical Biochip Assays Based on Anti-idiotypic Antibodies for Rapid and Automated On-Site Detection of Low Molecular Weight Toxins.

Front Chem 2019 1;7:31. Epub 2019 Feb 1.

Bruker Daltonik GmbH, Leipzig, Germany.

Phycotoxins and mycotoxins, such as paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins, type A trichothecenes, and aflatoxins are among the most toxic low molecular weight toxins associated with human poisoning incidents through the consumption of naturally contaminated food. Therefore, there is an utmost need for rapid and sensitive on-site detection systems. Herein, an electrochemical biochip for fast detection of saxitoxin, T-2 toxin as well as aflatoxin M1 and their corresponding congeners, respectively, using a portable and fully automated detection platform (pBDi, portable BioDetector integrated) was developed. Toxin analysis is facilitated upon the biochip via an indirect competitive immunoassay using toxin-specific antibodies combined with anti-idiotypic antibodies. The developed biochips enable detection in the low ng/mL-range within 17 min. Moreover, the assays cover a wide linear working range of 2-3 orders of magnitude above the limit of detection with an inter-chip coefficient of variation lower than 15%. The broad specificity of the employed antibodies which react with a large number of congeners within the respective toxin group allows efficient screening of contaminated samples for the presence of these low molecular weight toxins. With respect to the analysis of human urine samples, we focused here on the detection of saxitoxin, HT-2 toxin, and aflatoxin M1, all known as biomarkers of acute toxin exposure. Overall, it was proved that the developed biochip assays can be used to rapidly and reliably identify severe intoxications caused by these low molecular weight toxins.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fchem.2019.00031DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6367258PMC
February 2019

MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry speciation of staphylococci and their discrimination from micrococci isolated from indoor air of schoolrooms.

J Environ Monit 2010 Apr 28;12(4):917-23. Epub 2010 Jan 28.

Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, School of Medicine, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208, USA.

The focus of our work is the identification of medically relevant staphylococci from the environment; these organisms are among the major opportunistic pathogens associated with human disease. Andersen sampling was performed in schoolrooms during the school year. Eleven of thirty six isolates (all Gram-positive tetrads) were identified as staphylococci and 23 were characterized as micrococci. MALDI-TOF MS profiling was used as the first stage in the classification followed by standard biochemical tests including API Staph profiling. The staphylococcal isolates were each speciated; coagulase positive (Staphylococcus aureus [3 strains]) and coagulase negative: Staphylococcus warneri (4 isolates), Staphylococcus hominis (2), Staphylococcus saprophyticus (1) and Staphylococcus cohnii (1). S. aureus is most commonly found in the human nares but is frequently isolated from skin. The other staphylococcal species are among those most commonly isolated from human skin. Micrococci were much more frequently isolated from indoor air than reported by others for clinical samples. It is suggested that, without discrimination from micrococci, misidentification of staphylococci would be common on air sampling.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/b925250aDOI Listing
April 2010

Identification and functional characterisation of genes and corresponding enzymes involved in carnitine metabolism of Proteus sp.

Arch Microbiol 2005 Mar 25;183(3):176-89. Epub 2005 Feb 25.

Pharmazie und Psychologie, Fakultät für Biowissenschaften, Institut für Biochemie, Universität Leipzig, Germany.

Enzymes involved in carnitine metabolism of Proteus sp. are encoded by the cai genes organised as the caiTABCDEF operon. The complete operon could be sequenced from the genomic DNA of Proteus sp. Amino acid sequence similarities and/or enzymatic analysis confirmed the function assigned to each protein involved in carnitine metabolism. CaiT was suggested to be an integral membrane protein responsible for the transport of betaines. The caiA gene product was shown to be a crotonobetainyl-CoA reductase catalysing the irreversible reduction of crotonobetainyl-CoA to gamma-butyrobetainyl-CoA. CaiB and CaiD were identified to be the two components of the crotonobetaine hydrating system, already described. CaiB and caiD were cloned and expressed in Escherichia coli. After purification of both proteins, their individual enzymatic functions were solved. CaiB acts as betainyl-CoA transferase specific for carnitine, crotonobetaine, gamma-butyrobetaine and its CoA derivatives. Transferase reaction proceeds, following a sequential bisubstrate mechanism. CaiD was identified to be a crotonobetainyl-CoA hydratase belonging to the crotononase superfamily. Because of amino acid sequence similarities, CaiC was suggested to be a betainyl-CoA ligase. Taken together, these results show that the metabolism of carnitine and crotonobetaine in Proteus sp. proceeds at the CoA level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00203-005-0760-2DOI Listing
March 2005