Arizona State University has been awarded a four-year, $30 million contract from the U.S. Department of Defense to protect military personnel against bioterrorism.

The project seeks to develop a sophisticated and highly sensitive detection system to develop diagnostic immunosignaturing technology.

The technology will rapidly detect exposure to infectious disease agents before symptoms occur.

ASU officials they hope to develop a silicon chip-based technology capable of detecting a broad range of infectious organisms.

The contract is worth about $9 million for the first year and about $21 million for the final 36 months.

The co-director of the Center for Innovations in Medicine at ASU’s Biodesign Institute — Steven Albert Johnston — will lead the project.

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