Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.



Degree Program

Chemistry, PhD

Committee Chair

Grapperhaus, Craig

Committee Member

Gupta, Gautam

Committee Member

Buchanan, Robert

Committee Member

Jager, VAnce

Committee Member

Zhang, Xiang

Author's Keywords

Biomolecule preservation; Sol gel encapsulation; room temperature storage; BioCaRGOS stability; downstream compatibility


The preservation of proteins and nucleic acids is crucial for scientific and medical applications. Storing them at ultra-low temperatures is expensive and impractical. This thesis explores alternative strategies for room temperature storage, focusing on sol gel encapsulation. The challenges of maintaining biomolecule stability during storage are discussed, and strategies like additives, lyophilization, and encapsulation are explored. Silica sol gel encapsulation is investigated as an innovative storage method. It preserves biomolecule activity and allows customization of properties. The development of BioCaRGOS, a sol gel system for optimized room temperature storage, is presented. Hemoglobin and miRNA-21 are used as model bio molecules, showcasing stability and compatibility with clinical processes. Efforts are made to optimize BioCaRGOS for compatibility with downstream applications by addressing methanol interference. The release of pancreatic cancer biomarkers is evaluated, demonstrating compatibility with droplet digital PCR. The study further explores the stability of heme proteins under degradation and low pH conditions using BioCaRGOS, highlighting challenges in storing therapeutic proteins. In conclusion, sol gel encapsulation, particularly BioCaRGOS, shows potential for stabilizing and storing biomolecules at room temperature. It offers stability, ease of recovery, and compatibility with downstream applications. This research contributes to cost-effective storage methods, eliminating the need for specialized freezers and reducing energy consumption in biomolecule preservation.

Included in

Life Sciences Commons