The Science

We’re adapting a paper-based biosensor technique developed by a biomedical lab at McMaster University for the early detection of disease and E.coli bacteria in food and water.

The technique uses a process known as rolling circle DNA amplification to create long, repeated copies of a species’ DNA (to make the DNA more concentrated) and then links that a colour response.


The power, high specificity, simplicity and versatility of the technique have made it an attractive tool for the detection of DNA, particularly DNA of low quality and concentration. The same paper can also be used to extract the DNA from tissue or fecal samples, reducing the total number of steps and handling from animal remains to colour signal!

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