From Declining Bee Colonies to Bio Pathogens: how ABOid Identifies the Unknown

The Agents of Biological Origin Identifier software has two patents to date, and is capable of providing automated identification of the sample contents from both pure cultures and mixtures of microbes present in culture, environmental or biological matrices.

The Agents of Biological Origin Identifier software has two patents to date, and is capable of providing automated identification of the sample contents from both pure cultures and mixtures of microbes present in culture, environmental or biological matrices.

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — Scientists began noticing a drastic decline of bee colonies with no known cause in 2007. Many studies said that this decline of bees may put the country at risk of a food disaster. What few likely know is that a team of scientists at the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center utilized its own software to detect that a combination of both a virus and a fungi was the likely culprit.

Scientists with ECBC’s Research & Technology Directorate’s Point Detection Branch continue to enhance and expand this novel software suite of bioinformatics algorithms, which is capable of identifying biological microbes in various backgrounds without any prior knowledge of the sample. Utilizing data from a mass spectrometry-based proteomics system, the team can run any tandem mass spectral data through the software to provide statistical validation of its identity.

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Army, academia develop human-on-a-chip technology

Crystal Randall, an Army microbiologist on ECBC's in vitro research team, conducts laboratory research. (U.S. Army photo by Conrad Johnson)

Crystal Randall, an Army microbiologist on ECBC’s in vitro research team, conducts laboratory research. (U.S. Army photo by Conrad Johnson)

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (Sept. 26, 2013) — There was a time when the thought of manufacturing organs in the laboratory was science fiction, but now that science is a reality.

Army Scientists at the Edgewood Chemical Biological Center and academia collaborators have been conducting research of “organs” on microchips. ECBC is one of a few laboratories in the world conducting this research effort, but what sets ECBC apart is that its research will directly impact the warfighter.

The center houses the only laboratories in the United States that the Chemical Weapons Convention permits to produce chemical warfare agent for testing purposes. ECBC will test the human-on-a-chip against chemical warfare agent to learn more about how the body will respond to agent exposure and explore various treatment options for exposures.

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