|dc.description.abstract||Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease that results from infection by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which is regarded the most common infecting organism. TB has killed countless numbers of people particularly in underdeveloped countries. TB bacteria can remain inactive or in dormant state for years without causing symptoms or spreading to other subjects, but as soon as the immune system of the host becomes weakened, the bacteria become active and infect mainly the lungs along with other parts of body. TB cases are further aggravated by other illnesses that affect the immune system, such as human immune virus (HIV), which is very prevalent in resource-poor countries. Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) is a TB biomarker that has found to have all the qualities that are needed to help and cure Tuberculosis disease. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential measures for effectively controlling the disease. Traditional microbial culture-based tests are the most common methodologies currently used. Usually, these methods involve cell culture, cell counts, and cell enrichment, but this process is time-consuming and laborious, especially for the slow-growing bacteria like M. tuberculosis. Sputum smear is one of the methods currently used to detect acid fast bacilli (AFB) in clinical specimens or fluorescent staining. It is a cost-effective tool for diagnosing patients with TB and to monitor the progress of treatment especially in developing countries. The traditional method of inoculating solid medium such as Lowerstein-Jensen (L-J) or 7H10/7H11 media is also used currently it is slow and takes 6-8 weeks of incubation to diagnose the infection and further more time to determine the susceptibility patterns. The microscopic observation drug susceptibility (MODS) assay they are also used currently they rely on light microscopy to visualize the characteristic cording morphology of M. tuberculosis in liquid culture. MODS has shorter time to culture positivity (average 8 days) compared with LJ medium (average ~26 days), they are very expensive. The Gen-Probe assay specific for M. tuberculosis complex is a rapid detection that is also used, nucleic acid amplification (NAA) test results can be obtained as fast as in two hours (provided if a positive culture is present); it also has a high sensitivity of 99% and specificity of 99.2%. It holds the disadvantage of needing of positive culture that can take several days. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), is a test that uses antibodies and colour change to identify a substance. ELISA is an assay that uses a solid-phase enzyme immunoassay (EIA) to detect the presence of a substance, usually an antigen, in a liquid sample or wet sample. It can be used to detection of Mycobacterium antibodies in tuberculosis. The Amplified Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Direct Test (AMTDT) is used for the detection of M. tuberculosis it enables the amplification and detection of M. tuberculosis rRNA directly from respiratory specimens. The diagnostic methods employing genetechnology based on the amplification of DNA or RNA are expected to improve the speed, sensitivity, and specificity of Mycobacterium tuberculosis detection. TB rapid cultivation detection technique, such as MB/BacT system, BactecMGIT 960 system and flow cytometry. The BACTEC MGIT960 system (Becton Dickinson, Sparks, MD) performs incubation and reading of the tubes continuously inside the machine using a predefined algorithm to interpret the fluorescent signal and giving the results as positive or negative. When performing DST, the BACTEC MGIT960 interprets the results as susceptible or resistant to the antibiotic under study. Results are available within 8 days. A recent meta-analysis of the published studies found high accuracy and high predictive values associated with the use of BACTEC MGIT960. These methods are more sensitive and rapid than the traditional microbial culture-based methods. However, they cannot provide the detection results in real-time and most of these methods are centralized in large stationary laboratories because complex instrumentation and highly qualified technical staff are required. Recently, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved two new assays that were introduced. These two assays detect in vitro a specific immune response to M. tuberculosis. These tests are the QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube (Cellestis/Qiagen, Carnegie, Australia) and the T-SPOT.TB assay (Oxford Immunotec, Abingdon, United Kingdom). Both assays use whole blood from the patient and measure the production of interferon gamma after the whole blood is exposed to specific antigens from M. tuberculosis. These tests are based on the knowledge that IFN-γ is a product of an active cell-mediated immune response induced by M. tuberculosis. However, TB detection remains a major obstacle due to several drawbacks of these methods. To date, the number of diagnosis approaches for TB has increased as the disease continues to be a major public health problem worldwide and most conventional detection technologies present difficulties in recognizing the presence of M. tuberculosis, since they are time consuming, do not provide clinically reliable results and significantly lack of sensitivity.
This thesis focusedon developing two binary and one ternary-electrochemically quantum dots, all synthesised at room temperature in aqueous media for detecting (IFN-γ). Copper telluride (CuTe) and Zinc telluride (ZnTe) was prepared to check how does the two quantum dot behave individual and also to check on how they behave when they are combined and formed ternary quantum dots (CuZnTe). The electrochemical studies of the binary CuTe quantum dots, ZnTe quantum dots and the ternary CuZnTe core-shell quantum dots reveal that ternary quantum dots were stable and showed a significant enhancement in the conductivity of CuZnTe core-shell solution compared to that of CuTe and ZnTe, all studied in solution. The three different quantum dots were capped with three different capping reagents which are tetraethyl orthosilicate (TEOS), thioglycolic acid (TGA), (3-mercaptopropyl) trimethoxysilane (MPS). In the study, a label-free electrochemical immunosensor for the detection of interferon gamma (IFN-γ) was prepared for the first time using ternary quantum dots. The biosensor consists of water-soluble silica coated Copper Zinc telluride (CuZnTe core-shell) quantum dots conjugated to a gold electrode. The antibody-antigen were then conjugated on the CuZnTe core-shell QD modified gold electrode. Results from synthesis of two different binary quantum dots are also presented in the study and compared to the results of the CuZnTe core-shell QDs. The CuTe quantum dots had a small average size which was confirmed through HRTEM, SAXS and XRD analysis||en_US