ESR 7: Raheel Ahmad, CSIC, Barcelona, Spain

Multiplex binding array design for FoodSmartphones

My name is Raheel Ahmad and belongs to Pakistan. In general, due to my on going interest in Chemistry and Biology since high school days, I ingressed in BS Chemistry program with specialization in analytical and organic Chemistry. After completing two years study in Chemistry I conceded to BS Chemical Engineering degree and acquired advanced undergraduate degree from the University of Engineering and Technology (UET) Lahore, Pakistan in 2014 with Dean’s Honour Roll. Furthermore, I secured MS-research based fellowship from Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), South Korea and graduated research assistant position at BioNano Health Guard Research Center (H-Guard) in course of MS degree in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering (2014-2016). It was advanced master’s program in which I actively participated in research activities for two years. In my research incumbency, I took the challenge to develop highly selective and sensitive biosensors and specific developed on “Barcode DNA-mediated signal amplifying strategy for ultrasensitive target molecules detection coupled with MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry”.
Thanks to my education and extensive research, I started to work as Research Scientist at Mechanical Engineering department, KAIST. There I had developed strong personal and leadership skills. My responsibilities in laboratory were to separate proteins with acoustofluidics, optical readout analysis, design experimental setup to ensure reliable performance of acoustofluidics in real biological samples and finds it potential applications in point-of-care (POC) diagnostics. It was quite nice experience to integrate two platforms, biotechnology with acoustofluidics. Furthermore, I had been responsible for development, implementation, and review of the laboratory quality assurance and control programs.
In regard to my extracurricular activities, I like playing cricket, table tennis and traveling. I appreciate the value of insistence, ambition and team spirit. I have learnt that commitment is always necessary for success as an individual and how to work as a team member.
My main motivation to this project is how a new generation of mobile sensing approaches offer significant advantages over traditional platforms in terms of test speed, sensitivity, selectivity, reagent control, low cost, ease-of-operation, and data management and to provide a systematic classification according to the detection strategy-based on smartphone and providing a critical discussion of its strengths and practical use. I strongly believe that the integration of advanced biosensing technologies with cellphone enables the development of cogent lab-on-smartphone platforms for many important applications including POC diagnostics, environmental monitoring, and food safety analysis.

Raheel Ahmad