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Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering


Two important viral surface characteristics are the hydrophobicity and surface charge, which determine the viral colloidal behavior and mobility. Chemical force microscopy allows the detection of viral surface chemistry in liquid samples with small amounts of virus sample. This single-particle method requires the functionalization of an atomic force microscope (AFM) probe and covalent bonding of viruses to a surface. A hydrophobic methyl-modified AFM probe was used to study the viral surface hydrophobicity, and an AFM probe terminated with either negatively charged carboxyl acid or positively charged quaternary amine was used to study the viral surface charge. With an understanding of viral surface properties, the way in which viruses interact with the environment can be better predicted.

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