Thu. Jun 1st, 2023

Pakistani scientist Dr. Anbar Abbas has developed graphene quantum dots for Alzheimer’s diagnosis from used tea leaves, which can identify the presence of iron in Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s patients.

Pakistani scientist's invention, diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease with tea leaves
Pakistani scientist’s invention, diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease with tea leaves


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Pakistani scientist Dr. Anbar Abbas is a distinguished research scholar associated with Newcastle University in UK. In joint research with scientists from the University of Oxford, they have developed graphene quantum dots from used tea leaf ‘smudges’, which can be used as sensors to detect the presence of iron in the human body in addition to water.

Why use tea leaves to prepare quantum dots?

Speaking to Deutsche Welle, Dr. Anbar Abbas said that graphene is being widely used in medicine, especially pharmaceuticals, around the world. His team wanted to create quantum dots in a cost-effective and environmentally friendly way, for which used tea leaf foam was the perfect choice. Used tea leaves are thrown away, although they can be recycled.

Dr. Abbas further explains that for this purpose, the team of scientists heated the black tea leaves to about 50 degrees Celsius. In the next step, it is heated to a high temperature of 200 to 250 degrees Celsius to add the oxon chemical, which splits the graphene into very small pieces. The characteristic of these ultra-small particles was that due to the formation of a band gap in them, light was emitted from them.

Speaking to Deutsche Welle, Dr. Anbar Abbas said that to test these newly developed quantum dots, experiments were conducted by dissolving seventeen different heavy metal ions in water. From which it was revealed that in the presence of iron or iron they emit intense blue light. Therefore, they can be used as sensors for the detection of iron particles in a variety of biological and environmental systems.

According to Dr. Anbar Abbas, the increasing rate of neurological diseases, especially Alzheimer’s and dementia, is a matter of concern. Scientists have been trying to find out its reasons for a long time. Dr Abbas cited recent research by Dr Barbara Maher, a professor at Lancaster University in Manchester. Two years ago, he took some air samples from the atmosphere and analyzed them in the laboratory. Surprisingly, the presence of thousands of microscopic particles in the free atmosphere was revealed. These particles were high in iron.

Dr. Barbara Maher’s research also revealed that increasing amounts of iron, aluminum, and titanium particles in the atmosphere are affecting human brain cells and causing a number of neurological diseases, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. There are lists.

According to Dr. Anbar Abbas, the positive aspect of his joint research with Oxford University scientists is that in this way, the identification of iron in the body of Alzheimer’s patients will not only be possible easily, but it is a cheap and environmentally friendly method. Acids were previously used to produce these graphene quantum dots, which also cost more and had different side effects.

Speaking to Deutsche Welle, Dr. Anbar Abbas said that the graphene quantum dots he developed can also be used to detect iron and other heavy metals in water. Due to the addition of industrial waste water bodies worldwide, the amount of metal particles like iron, nickel, chromium, etc. are increasing rapidly, which are causing cancer, liver, kidney and kidney diseases.

According to Dr. Abbas, it is important to determine the amount of heavy metals in clean water reservoirs at the local level and manage their cleaning. For this purpose, these graphene quantum dots are ideal because they are produced in a cheap and environmentally friendly way for which the raw material, tea leaf foam, is readily available everywhere.

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