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Diamond-based Quantum Sensor for Molecular Analytics
Speaker Dr. Mouzhe Xie, University of Chicago
Date 16 March 2023 (Thursday)
Time 15:00 - 16:30
Venue Room 4472, Academic Building, HKUST (Lifts 25-26)

Quantum sensing technologies enable some of the most precise measurements that human beings have ever achieved. In recent years, optically addressable nitrogen-vacancy (NV) color center hosted by diamond crystal has been used as a novel quantum sensor, which has exquisitely sensitive response to local magnetic field fluctuations. It is therefore capable to perform micro-/nano-scale NMR experiments, manifesting enormous potential to study biological systems on extremely small sample volume – even down to single-molecule regime.

In this seminar, I will discuss some of the comprehensive efforts to develop NV-based quantum sensing platforms for a wide range of applications in chemistry and biology. I will start with a general introduction to quantum sensing followed by conventional NMR spectroscopy as a powerful tool to study biomolecules, as well as their connections to the NV-based nanoscale NMR. I will then introduce a biocompatible surface functionalization architecture for interfacing a diamond quantum sensor with individual intact biomolecules under physiological conditions. A sensing modality based on diamond membrane integrated with flow channel will also be discussed, which is a promising platform for a variety of experiments at molecular, cellular, and even living-organism levels. Finally, I will conclude by providing an outlook on how NV-based quantum sensing platforms, combined with other advanced spectroscopy and microscopy methods, can be utilized to address important biophysical and bioanalytical questions with unprecedented sensitivity and spatial resolution, which will enhance our understanding of molecular interactions and cellular processes and ultimately improve human health.


Dr. Mouzhe Xie’s research centers on the development and application of novel spectroscopy and microscopy techniques to study biophysics at molecular level. He received B.S in Chemical Biology from Xiamen University in 2013, and conducted Ph.D. research at The Ohio State University on NMR spectroscopy techniques to probe protein structure and functional dynamics from 2013 to 2018 under the supervision of Prof. Rafael Brüschweiler. Dr. Xie is conducting postdoctoral research on nanoscale NMR technology enabled by diamond-based quantum sensor in Prof. Peter Maurer’s research lab, firstly at l’École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne and currently at the University of Chicago.