Yingfu Li

Key Research Areas
Associated Researchers
Associated Organizations

Recent Research Projects

DNAPrint: a pathogen-tracking paper sensor platform that integrates functional DNA with nanomaterials

2016/17-2018/19 • $672,000 • PI,CO
Many human diseases are linked to infections involving various pathogens. In addition, growing risks of bioterrorism pose on-going threats to public safety and security. Moreover, rapid evolution of antibiotic-resistant "superbugs" is becoming a pressing global concern. It has been recognized...

Expanding the function and utility of nucleic acids

2015/16-2018/19 • $500,000 • PI
Better known as the blueprint of all living organisms on earth and the foundation of modern biology, nucleic acids - both DNA and RNA - have been repeatedly shown to have other talents, which include the ability to function as catalysts (enzymes) and molecular detectives (receptors). A growing...

Paper-based diagnostic device for colorectal cancer detection

2017/18-2018/19 • $402,900 • PI
Colorectal cancer (CRC) affects over a million people globally, resulting in ~600,000 deathsannually. Early detection of CRC can significantly reduce the mortality of CRC. Whenneoplastic lesions are found while they are locally contained, the 5-year survival rate isgreater than 90%; when they...

AgroPathogenMeter- developing a handheld platform for on-farm, rapid and, inexpensive animal testing

2017/18-2018/19 • $380,080 • PI,CO
We propose to develop the AgroPathogenMeter (APM)- a platform for on-site, rapid, and inexpensive testing of farm animals for deadly pathogens. Today's state-of-the-art method for testing animals for infectious pathogens is based on polymerase chain reaction (PCR). While a highly accurate...

Developing a strain-specific test for rapid diagnosis of Clostridium difficile

2016/17-2018/19 • $300,000 • PI,CO
Clostridium difficile causes severe diarrhoea and is the main culprit for healthcare associated infections. The emergence of a new hypervirulent strain of C. difficile, known as NAP1, in recent years has caused a significant rise in the incidence and severity of infection. This is of major...

Paper-based diagnostic device for colorectal cancer detection

2017/18-2018/19 • $268,600 • PI,CO
Colorectal cancer (CRC) affects over a million people globally, resulting in ~600,000 deaths annually. Early detection of CRC can significantly reduce the mortality of CRC. When neoplastic lesions are found while they are locally contained, the 5-year survival rate is greater than 90%; when they...

Biosensors for Bedside Detection of Urinary Biomarkers

2016/17-2017/18 • $105,000 • Scholarship/Fellowship,Other
Medical tests commonly use urine to identify the levels of a myriad of biomolecules, but this requires the samples being sent to a lab. Thus there exists room for detection of important biomarkers (indicators of disease) at the bedside. This project will create biosensors capable of rapid...

NSERC CREATE Biointerfaces Training Program

2011/12-2016/17 • $1,300,000 • PI,CO
Our understanding of the nature of the biological/material interface, or biointerface, impacts all materials in biological media from contact lenses to blood contacting materials to diagnostic test strips and new bioseparation media. The CREATE Biointerfaces Training Program will provide unique...

Developing a strain-specific test for rapid diagnosis of Clostridium difficile

2016/17 • $10,000 • PI,CO
Clostridium difficile causes severe diarrhoea and is the main culprit for healthcare associated infections. The emergence of a new hypervirulent strain of C. difficile, known as NAP1, in recent years has caused a significant rise in the incidence and severity of infection. This is of major...

NSERC - SENTINEL - Bioactive Paper Strategic Network

2010/11-2015/16 • $7,594,000 • PI,CO
Bioactive paper that can detect and deactivate dangerous bacteria and viruses in food and water will deliver health benefits around the world. Bioactive Paper is a made-in-Canada concept articulated in the first phase (2005-2010) of the Sentinel Bioactive Paper Network, an NSERC strategic...

Development of diagnostic teststrips incorporating concatameric aptamers for quantitative detection of C. difficile

2013/14-2015/16 • $314,000 • PI,CO
The emergence of new pathogenic species and strains that are resistant to traditional treatments are amongst the most pressing health concerns of our time. The bird flu virus epidemic and the outbreak of Clostridium difficile in several hospitals across Canada in the past year are the latest...

Developing RNA-cleaving DNAzymes as Molecular Tools for Cancer Study and as Cancer Therapeutics

2010/11-2014/15 • $555,021 • PI
DNA is widely known as the material used by all living organisms on Earth to store and transmit genetic information. Recently however, DNA has been shown to have other talents as well, one of which is to act as a catalyst to make or break molecules of biological significance. DNA-made catalysts,...

Functional nucleic acids as catalysts and molecular recognition elements

2010/11-2014/15 • $422,500 • PI
Nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) are widely known as the hereditary material for the storage and transmission of genetic information in all living organisms on earth. Since early 1980s, nucleic acids have been shown to have other talents as well, which include the ability to perform intriguing...

Toward a rational and novel therapy for clostridium difficile infection

2012/13-2014/15 • $372,000 • PI,CO
Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI) is one of the most frequent causes of health care-associated infectious diseases in Canada and other industrialized countries, with a mortality rate of approximately 6%. A Canadian study has reported that CDI for in-hospital adult patients is...

Aptamers for omega-3 fatty acids

2014/15 • $12,500 • PI
Omega-3 fatty acids (Omega-3) are very important to human health, but more than 70% of Canadians are Omega-3 deficient. Currently, Omega-3 status of individuals is determined via blood test in private laboratories using a method that is old, tedious, and time consuming. Pivotal Therapeutics Inc...

Toward a rational and novel therapy for clostridium difficile infection

2012/13-2013/14 • $186,000 • PI,CO
Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI) is one of the most frequent causes of health care-associatedinfectious diseases in Canada and other industrialized countries, with a mortality rate of approximately 6%. ACanadian study has reported that CDI for in-hospital adult patients is 65...

Aptamers for Omega-3 fatty acids

2013/14 • $25,000 • PI
Omega-3 fatty acids (Omega-3) are very important to human health, but more than 70% of Canadians are Omega-3 deficient. Currently, Omega-3 status of individuals is determined via blood test in private laboratories using a method that is old, tedious, and time consuming. Pivotal Therapeutics Inc...

Catalytic DNA for protein sensing

2010/11-2012/13 • $244,012 • PI,CO
DNA is widely known as the material used by all living organisms on Earth to store and transmit genetic information. Recently however, DNA has been shown to have other talents as well, including the ability to function as catalysts and molecular recognition elements (receptors). DNA-made...

Functional nucleic acids as catalysts and molecular recognition elements

2010/11-2012/13 • $120,000 • PI
No summary

Fluorescent Indicator for Listeria

2011/12 • $125,000 • PI
Food-borne pathogen outbreaks have caused public safety - as well as economic - crises around the world. The most common agents responsible are bacterial pathogens, and testing for these pathogens is a public health concern. The costs associated with food safety management are high. Our survey...

Directed Evolution of Nucleic Acids

2010/11 • $75,000 • PI
DNA enzymes and DNA aptamers are artificial DNA molecules with catalytic function and binding capability, respectively. They can be used as effective molecular tools in medical diagnosis, biosensing and drug screening. This project aims to study DNA enzymes and DNA aptamers through a test-tube...

Functional DNA based bioassays and biosensors for the detection of pathogenic bacteria in the health sector and food industry

2010/11 • $45,668 • PI,CO
The threat of bioterrorism and the emergence of new pathogenic species and strains that are resistant to traditional treatments are amongst the most pressing health concerns of our time. The bird flu virus epidemic and the outbreak of Escherichia coli and Salmonella-contaminated lettuce in North...

Developing riboswitch-based biosensors to track small molecules within bacterial cells

2010/11 • $12,500 • Scholarship/Fellowship,Other
Recently there has been considerable progress made in evaluating which genes are expressed by a particular organism or cell type in response to a given set of conditions. While gene profiling is a valuable tool, it cannot on its own provide a full picture of the physiology of a cell. As such the...

Patents

APTAMER SELECTION METHOD

The present invention provides a method for the selection of aptamer sequenc es and aptamers identified using the method. The method comprises immobilizing a library oligonucleotide by forming a duplex with an antisense oligonucleotid e, reating the duplex molecule with a target and collecting oligonucleotide molecules which dissociate from the duplex structure.
Related applications: CA20042520846, EP20040724504, WO2004CA00482, AT20040724504T

METHOD OF PRODUCING BIOACTIVE PAPER

The present disclosure relates to methods for attaching bioactive agents to paper products by contacting the paper with a solution comprising colloid al support particles where said colloidal support particles are associated w ith bioactive agents. In specific embodiment of the disclosure, the colloida l support particles are functionalized poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) microgels . The disclosure further covers the bioactive paper produced by this method as well as uses thereof, in particular...
Related applications: CA20082683729, WO2008CA00696

COLORIMETRIC BIOSENSOR WITH ALLOSTERIC DNAZYME ACTIVATION AND ROLLING CIRCLE SIGNAL AMPLIFICATION

The present disclosure includes a method of determining the presence of a target in a sample comprising an allosteric DNAzyme; rolling circle amplification dependent on the activity of the allosteric DNAzyme in the presence of target and a detection system. The methods further comprise quantifying the amount of target in the sample by comparing the detection with a control. Also included herein are kits for practicing the methods described herein and methods of designing biosensor systems.
Related applications: WO2009CA01847

CATALYTIC NUCLEIC ACID PROBES AS MICROBIAL INDICATORS

The disclosure relates to a method of generating catalytic nucleic acid probes useful for detecting microorganisms such as bacterial pathogens. In one embodiment, the catalytic nucleic acid probes are fluorogenic DNAzymes. The disclosure also relates to catalytic nucleic acid probes and methods of using the probes for detecting microorganisms.
Related applications: WO2012CA00205, CA20122829275

BIOSENSORS COMPRISING CONCATEMERIC NUCLEIC ACID MOLECULES

The present application relates to biosensors, for example comprising an high-molecular weight, tandem repeating, structure-switching nucleic acid aptamers (concatemeric aptamers) to rapidly create patterned sensors via, for example, inkjet printing. These concatemeric aptamer reporters remain immobilized at the point of printing through strong adsorption but retain sufficient segmental mobility to undergo structure switching and reporter signalling to provide both qualitative and...
Related applications: CA20162925053

DNA TEMPLATES FOR ROLLING CIRCLE AMPLIFICATION

The present application provides circular templates that are high in adenine and cytosine and methods and uses thereof for rolling circle amplification (RCA). These templates are particularly suitable for biosensing applications involving RCA.
Related applications: CA20162926295

BIOSENSOR COMPRISING TANDEM REACTIONS OF STRUCTURE SWITCHING, NUCLEOLYTIC DIGESTION AND AMPLIFICATION OF A NUCLEIC ACID ASSEMBLY

The present application relates to a biosensor for detecting analytes, various kits and methods of use thereof. In particular, the biosensor's mode of operation is based on binding of analytes to a nucleic acid sequence which triggers rolling circle amplification and detection of the amplified product as the indicator of the presence of the analytes.
Related applications: WO2016CA50731, EP20160813435, CA20162989445

NUCLEIC ACID CATENANE WITH A LINKING DUPLEX BIOSENSOR FOR DETECTION OF A MICROORGANISM TARGET

The present application is directed to biosensors and methods for detecting a microorganism target in a sample using a mechanically interlocked nucleic acid catanane, wherein an enzyme from the microorganism target or that is activated by a molecule from the microorganism target cleaves a linkage in a first single-stranded nucleic acid ring of the catanane structure, allowing rolling-circle amplification to occur and the presence of rolling-circle amplification products indicates the...
Related applications: CA20163046266, WO2016CA51459

NUCLEIC ACID AMPLIFICATION BIOSENSOR FOR USE IN ROLLING CIRCLE AMPLIFICATION (RCA)

The present application describes a biosensor for detecting target nucleic acid. The biosensor's mode of operation is based on binding of the target nucleic acid to another nucleic acid sequence and a circular template which triggers rolling circle amplification and detection of the amplified product as the indicator of the presence of the target nucleic acid. The biosensor is immobilized on a solid support, such as paper.
Related applications: WO2016CA51458, CA20163007848

NUCLEIC ACID ENZYME-MEDIATED SIGNAL AMPLIFICATION FOR BIOSENSING

Described is an approach that takes advantage of rolling circle amplification (RCA) and an RNA-cleaving DNAzyme (RCD) to achieve massive signal amplification for biosensing via a cross-feedback mechanism. An RCA reaction generates copies of an RCD that triggers a reaction cascade designed to generate additional DNA assemblies for RCA. These cross- feedback actions work autonomously to turn limited molecular recognition events into massive amounts of DNA amplicons that can be conveniently...
Related applications: WO2018CA50294

SOL-GEL DERIVED BIOHYBRID MATERIALS INCORPORATING LONG-CHAIN DNA APTAMERS

The present application relates to a new class of macroporous bio/inorganic hybrids, engineered through a high-throughput materials screening approach that entrap micron-sized concatemeric DNA aptamers. The entrapment of these long-chain DNA aptamers allows their retention within the macropores of the silica material, so that aptamers can interact with high molecular weight targets such as proteins.
Related applications: CA20183006158

APTAMERS FOR CLOSTRIDIUM DIFFICILE DETECTION

Provided herein are aptamers, aptamer probes and biosensor systems that detect C. difficile glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH). Also provided are methods of detecting C. difficile GDH using the aptamers, probes and biosensors and methods of determining whether a subject has a C. difficile infection.
Related applications: CA20183016351

DIFFERENTIAL SIGNAL BIOSENSING FOR DETECTING AN ANALYTE

The present application relates to a biosensor for detecting an analyte comprising a first and second working electrode; a detection probe functionalized on the first working electrode, the detection probe comprising a reporter moiety and a recognition moiety for an analyte; a capture probe functionalized on the second working electrode; and a counter electrode. Each working electrode is configured to provide a change in signal if the analyte is present. The biosensor can be used to detect...
Related applications: WO2020CA50375