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A simple novel device for air sampling by electrokinetic capture

Overview of attention for article published in Microbiome, December 2015
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  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (85th percentile)
  • Average Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source

Mentioned by

12 tweeters
1 patent
1 Google+ user


13 Dimensions

Readers on

54 Mendeley
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A simple novel device for air sampling by electrokinetic capture
Published in
Microbiome, December 2015
DOI 10.1186/s40168-015-0141-2
Pubmed ID

Julian Gordon, Prasanthi Gandhi, Gajendra Shekhawat, Angel Frazier, Jarrad Hampton-Marcell, Jack A. Gilbert


A variety of different sampling devices are currently available to acquire air samples for the study of the microbiome of the air. All have a degree of technical complexity that limits deployment. Here, we evaluate the use of a novel device, which has no technical complexity and is easily deployable. An air-cleaning device powered by electrokinetic propulsion has been adapted to provide a universal method for collecting samples of the aerobiome. Plasma-induced charge in aerosol particles causes propulsion to and capture on a counter-electrode. The flow of ions creates net bulk airflow, with no moving parts. A device and electrode assembly have been re-designed from air-cleaning technology to provide an average air flow of 120 lpm. This compares favorably with current air sampling devices based on physical air pumping. Capture efficiency was determined by comparison with a 0.4 μm polycarbonate reference filter, using fluorescent latex particles in a controlled environment chamber. Performance was compared with the same reference filter method in field studies in three different environments. For 23 common fungal species by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), there was 100 % sensitivity and apparent specificity of 87 %, with the reference filter taken as "gold standard." Further, bacterial analysis of 16S RNA by amplicon sequencing showed equivalent community structure captured by the electrokinetic device and the reference filter. Unlike other current air sampling methods, capture of particles is determined by charge and so is not controlled by particle mass. We analyzed particle sizes captured from air, without regard to specific analyte by atomic force microscopy: particles at least as low as 100 nM could be captured from ambient air. This work introduces a very simple plug-and-play device that can sample air at a high-volume flow rate with no moving parts and collect particles down to the sub-micron range. The performance of the device is substantially equivalent to capture by pumping through a filter for microbiome analysis by quantitative PCR and amplicon sequencing.

Twitter Demographics

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Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 54 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 3 6%
Egypt 1 2%
Unknown 50 93%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 15 28%
Student > Ph. D. Student 10 19%
Student > Bachelor 7 13%
Student > Master 6 11%
Student > Doctoral Student 3 6%
Other 6 11%
Unknown 7 13%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 12 22%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 10 19%
Environmental Science 7 13%
Engineering 7 13%
Veterinary Science and Veterinary Medicine 2 4%
Other 7 13%
Unknown 9 17%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 10. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 10 November 2016.
All research outputs
of 19,163,209 outputs
Outputs from Microbiome
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Outputs of similar age
of 388,534 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Microbiome
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Altmetric has tracked 19,163,209 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 86th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 1,157 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 40.1. This one is in the 24th percentile – i.e., 24% of its peers scored the same or lower than it.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 388,534 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 85% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 79 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one is in the 44th percentile – i.e., 44% of its contemporaries scored the same or lower than it.