The rapid development of scanned probe technologies allowing the precise application and measurement of minute forces has opened exciting new perspectives in bio-analytics. However, their applications in bio-analytics are hampered by the limited throughput. We developed molecular force balances as an alternative approach to measure the unbinding force of inter-molecular bonds in a differential format by comparison with a known reference bond. In addition to a marked increase in sensitivity and force resolution, this new approach allows for a parallel assay format, which is a prerequisite for most bio-analytical applications.
Another class of molecular devices is built up from smart molecules , which sense their environment and respond appropriately. Particularly smart polymers are in the focus of our research.