Date of Award

Spring 5-2016

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis


Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Alex S. Flynt

Advisor Department

Biological Sciences


MicroRNAs are approximately 22-nucleotide long RNA molecules that function through decay and translational repression of messenger RNA. The microRNA let-7 is found to play a role in maintaining the fate of differentiated cells in humans. Thus, expression level of this microRNA is a reliable biomarker of tumor cell phenotype. However, there are significant limitations in the current profiling techniques of microRNA. The current methods like northern blotting, microarrays, RT-PCR, or using locked nucleic acid (LNA) for in-situ hybridization are either laborious, semi-quantitative, or expensive. In this research we try to address this issue by developing a fast, specific, and inexpensive method. This method utilizes the intrinsic properties of the conducting polymer polyaniline (PANI) as a sensing platform to detect specific target miRNAs.