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  1. Multi-stage fluidic reaction schemes for suspended particles (e.g., micro/nanospheres, cells, bacterial species, and extracellular vesicles) underly a diversity of chemical and biological applications. Conventional methods for executing such protocols can be exceedingly time, labor, and/or cost intensive. Microfluidic strategies can address these drawbacks; however, such technologies typically rely on clean room-based microfabrication that suffer from similar deficits for manufacturing the chips. To simultaneously overcome these challenges, here we explore the use of the submicron-scale additive manufacturing approach, “Two-Photon Direct Laser Writing (DLW)”, as a means for fabricating micro-fluidic “Deterministic Lateral Displacement (DLD)” arrays capable of passively guiding suspended particles across discrete, adjacent flow streams—the fundamental capability of continuous-flow multi-stage particle microreactors. Experimental results from microfluidic experimentation with 5 μm-in-diameter fluorescent particles revealed effective particle transport across flow streams, with 87.5% of fluorescent peaks detected in the designated, opposing outlet following the DLD array. These results suggest utility of the presented approach for micro- and nanoparticle-based microfluidic reactors targeting wide-ranging chemical and biological applications.
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  2. Abstract

    The ability to reconstitute natural glycosylation pathways or prototype entirely new ones from scratch is hampered by the limited availability of functional glycoenzymes, many of which are membrane proteins that fail to express in heterologous hosts. Here, we describe a strategy for topologically converting membrane-bound glycosyltransferases (GTs) into water soluble biocatalysts, which are expressed at high levels in the cytoplasm of living cells with retention of biological activity. We demonstrate the universality of the approach through facile production of 98 difficult-to-express GTs, predominantly of human origin, across several commonly used expression platforms. Using a subset of these water-soluble enzymes, we perform structural remodeling of both free and protein-linked glycans including those found on the monoclonal antibody therapeutic trastuzumab. Overall, our strategy for rationally redesigning GTs provides an effective and versatile biosynthetic route to large quantities of diverse, enzymatically active GTs, which should find use in structure-function studies as well as in biochemical and biomedical applications involving complex glycomolecules.

  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available February 1, 2023
  4. Deterministic lateral displacement (DLD) is a microfluidic micro/nanopost array-based technique for size-based particle separations. A key challenge in scaling DLD for handling smaller particles is that creating such “nanoDLD” arrays can be cost-intensive with substantial technical hurdles. To circumvent such issues, here we explore a new “hexagonally arranged triangles (HAT)” DLD geometry that is based on patterns associated with nanosphere lithography (NSL). Finite element simulations and preliminary experiments with 0.86 μm and 4.7 μm particles suggest effective separation capabilities of the HAT-DLD approach, marking an important first step toward new classes of nanoDLD arrays fabricated through bottom-up, self-assembly-based NSL.
  5. ABSTRACT The analogy of the host galaxy of the repeating fast radio burst (FRB) source FRB 121102 and those of long gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) and superluminous supernovae (SLSNe) has led to the suggestion that young magnetars born in GRBs and SLSNe could be the central engine of repeating FRBs. We test such a hypothesis by performing dedicated observations of the remnants of six GRBs with evidence of having a magnetar central engine using the Arecibo telescope and the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT). A total of ∼20 h of observations of these sources did not detect any FRB from these remnants. Under the assumptions that all these GRBs left behind a long-lived magnetar and that the bursting rate of FRB 121102 is typical for a magnetar FRB engine, we estimate a non-detection probability of 8.9 × 10−6. Even though these non-detections cannot exclude the young magnetar model of FRBs, we place constraints on the burst rate and luminosity function of FRBs from these GRB targets.