Michael C. Leopold, Floyd D. and Elisabeth S. Gottwald Professor of Chemistry at the University of Richmond, has been awarded a three-year grant by the National Science Foundation.

The grant will continue Dr. Leopold’s research in bioanalytical nanomaterials and fund his project “Xerogel-Based Amperometric Biosensors Incorporating Nanoparticle Networks: Adaptable Templates for Clinically-Relevant Measurements.” The $270,000 grant will support Leopold plus several undergraduates and post-baccalaureate fellows over the course of three summers with materials and travel related to the research.

“The research we are doing will ultimately be used to design a sensor or electrode that can be easily inserted into the body through a catheter or IV to detect uric or lactic acid in the bloodstream,” said Leopold. “Measuring uric acid can detect preeclampsia risk for pregnant woman, and lactic acid levels can indicate a serious whole body infection known as sepsis.”

“Right now, detecting these acids can require numerous and lengthy blood tests. We believe maternity wards and emergency rooms will be able to use this technology to better treat patients and even save lives,” he added.

Leopold earned a bachelor’s degree from James Madison University, conducted his doctoral work at North Carolina State University, and completed his postdoctoral work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill before coming to the University of Richmond in 2002.

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Floyd D. and Elisabeth S. Gottwald Professor of Chemistry
Bioanalytical Nanomaterials