Organic decomposition processes, involving the breakdown of complex molecules such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, release small chemicals known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), smelly even at very low concentrations, but not all readily detectable by vertebrates. Many of these compounds are instead detected by insects, mostly by saprophytic species, for which long-range orientation towards organic decomposition matter is crucial. In the present work the detection of aldehydes, as an important measure of lipid oxidation, has been possible exploiting the molecular machinery underlying odour recognition inHermetia illucens(Diptera: Stratiomyidae). This voracious scavenger insect is of interest due to its outstanding capacity in bioconversion of organic waste, colonizing very diverse environments due to the ability of sensing a wide range of chemical compounds that influence the choice of substrates for ovideposition. A variety of soluble odorant binding proteins (OBPs) that may function as carriers of hydrophobic molecules from the air-water interface in the antenna of the insect to the receptors were identified, characterised and expressed. An OBP-based nanobiosensor prototype was realized using selected OBPs as sensing layers for the development of an array of quartz crystal microbalances (QCMs) for vapour phase detection of selected compounds at room temperature. QCMs coated with four recombinantH. illucensOBPs (HillOBPs) were exposed to a wide range of VOCs indicative of organic decomposition, showing a high sensitivity for the detection of three chemical compounds belonging to the class of aldehydes and one short-chain fatty acid. The possibility of using biomolecules capable of binding small ligands as reversible gas sensors has been confirmed, greatly expanding the state-of the-art in gas sensing technology.

Odorant binding proteins fromHermetia illucens: potential sensing elements for detecting volatile aldehydes involved in early stages of organic decomposition

Nardiello M.;Scieuzo C.;Salvia R.;Farina D.;Franco A.;Falabella P.
;
2022

Abstract

Organic decomposition processes, involving the breakdown of complex molecules such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, release small chemicals known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), smelly even at very low concentrations, but not all readily detectable by vertebrates. Many of these compounds are instead detected by insects, mostly by saprophytic species, for which long-range orientation towards organic decomposition matter is crucial. In the present work the detection of aldehydes, as an important measure of lipid oxidation, has been possible exploiting the molecular machinery underlying odour recognition inHermetia illucens(Diptera: Stratiomyidae). This voracious scavenger insect is of interest due to its outstanding capacity in bioconversion of organic waste, colonizing very diverse environments due to the ability of sensing a wide range of chemical compounds that influence the choice of substrates for ovideposition. A variety of soluble odorant binding proteins (OBPs) that may function as carriers of hydrophobic molecules from the air-water interface in the antenna of the insect to the receptors were identified, characterised and expressed. An OBP-based nanobiosensor prototype was realized using selected OBPs as sensing layers for the development of an array of quartz crystal microbalances (QCMs) for vapour phase detection of selected compounds at room temperature. QCMs coated with four recombinantH. illucensOBPs (HillOBPs) were exposed to a wide range of VOCs indicative of organic decomposition, showing a high sensitivity for the detection of three chemical compounds belonging to the class of aldehydes and one short-chain fatty acid. The possibility of using biomolecules capable of binding small ligands as reversible gas sensors has been confirmed, greatly expanding the state-of the-art in gas sensing technology.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11563/153985
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