2018 Activity Report vol.12:Okayama University

Activity Report of Open Application Course vol.12

Collaborative research program with Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) in Malaysia

Report from Okayama University

A team of four students and one faculty member from Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) in Malaysia was invited from 22nd July to 29th July, 2018. The purpose of the invitation was to conduct research on the characterization of magnetic nanoparticles and its application to magnetic immunoassay, which Okayama University and UMP are working with, and to promote collaborative research in the future.

In recent years researches on the application of magnetic nanoparticles in the field of biotechnology have been actively conducted. In particular, a high sensitivity measurement can be made in a shorter time by the immunoassay method using magnetic nanoparticles than by the current inspection method, and practical use is expected in the future. This time, the measurement and evaluation using the basic characteristics evaluation device and the immune response inspection device for magnetic nanoparticles was conducted, by using the SQUID (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device) ultra-sensitive magnetic sensor developed at Advanced Electro Measurement Technology Laboratory in Okayama University.

Group photo immediately after orientation

On the 1st day the team arrived at Okayama and visited Okayama City. It was the first visit to Japan for the four students, and they did not show fatigue during long trips, and were interested in the stores and houses on the streets of Japan that they saw for the first time.

On the 2nd day, after conducting the orientation in the morning, an explanation and measurement demonstration of the ultrahigh sensitivity magnetic measurement device was given by the students of Okayama University. Then the UMP students took a tour of the laboratory. The device fabrication and evaluation for measurement, and the development of measurement systems are being done in the laboratory. They saw a wide variety of device fabrication equipment and evaluation equipment, and could be seen asking questions actively about research content.

On the 3rd and 4th days they evaluated the basic characteristics of the magnetic nanoparticles and measured immune response. They first measured the DC magnetization characteristics and AC magnetization characteristics of magnetic nanoparticles using the equipment developed at Okayama University, compared with the results measured by the compact magnetic property evaluation device that is being developed at UMP, and had a discussion. Then, they also measured immune response using magnetic nanoparticles. During the time interval between the measurements, the students and faculty members of Okayama University explained the principle and measurement process of the ultra-sensitive magnetic sensor, and the UMP students eagerly listened to the explanation.

UMP students seriously listening to the explanation by Okayama University students
Explaining preparation method of measurement sample

On the 5th day they visited the Kurashiki Science Center and the Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter. At the science center, they were impressed by the exhibits which enabled learning about science and technology while having fun. In the Bikan Historical Quarter, they were impressed by the beautiful scenery and the traditional Japanese buildings, and it seemed that they enjoyed, and were satisfied with, the Japanese food.

On the 6th day, each student made a presentation on her/his research results, and discussed the results with the faculty members and students of Okayama University. A social gathering was held in the evening, and the students from the laboratory participated and deepened the exchanges. The foreign students who were staying for a short term at the laboratory also joined the Kurashiki visit and social gathering, and it became a very good opportunity for exchanges by talking with the students from various countries.

Presentation of research results by all students
Exchanges with the students of Okayama University

On next day they moved to Osaka, visited Osaka Castle and Osaka History Museum, enjoyed sightseeing in Osaka city, and also learned Japanese history. On the following day, they returned to their country by an early morning flight.

Though it was a very short period of about 1 week, the UMP students who returned to their home country reported that they were extremely satisfied with the program of this time, and that this was a valuable opportunity to promote collaborative research in the future.