NanoRETE formed to create nanoparticle-based biosensors

The biotechnology firm nanoRETE has been created in an effort to design and market nanoparticle-based handheld biosensors to detect multiple threats, including anthrax, tuberculosis, E. coli and salmonella.

Evangelyn Alocilja, nanoRETE's chief scientific officer, developed the nanoparticles used in the device, which have unique magnetic, polymeric and electrical properties. The device, which can generate rapid results within an hour of receiving a sample, requires no specific training when used and the process can be completely carried out in the field.

Fred Beyerlein, the chief executive officer at nanoRETE, said that the company's X-MARK platform-based technology can also be used to detect multiple pathogens and toxins at once. The technology also allows for rapid identification and isolation of contaminated food or water, which makes the device suitable for food growers, packagers and sellers.

According to officials for the company, the price of this portable technology is much lower than the price of the closest competitive technology available currently on the market.

Alocilja is a professor of biosystems and agricultural engineering at Michigan State University. The company licensed technologies through MSU Technologies, which is an MSU office that controls the transfer of technology at the university. The investment partnership Michigan Accelerator Fund I, based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is one of the financial supporters for nanoRETE.