Sabanci University Nanotechnology Research and Application Centre, 34956, Orhanli, Tuzla, Istanbul


Phone : +90 5363826105

Email : meralyuce (at)

COST ROLE : MC Member (Turkey)

Description of the Organisations and PI

Sabanci University Nanotechnology Research and Application Centre (SUNUM) is established by The Turkish Ministry of Development and Sabancı foundation with 25 Million Euros investment. The high-tech facility of the Centre is designed to support cutting-edge scientific and technological research related to nanotechnologies. The unique infrastructure of the Centre includes a state-of-the art, two-story, 7400 m2 building with 850 m2 clean room, 1,600 m2 for multi-disciplinary laboratories and 2400 m22 office and general use, all furnished with high tech equipment to support R&D in nanotechnologies. The Centre is environmentally friendly by minimizing energy use and waste generation. SUNUM is the first building in Turkey conforming to both LEED and BREEAM standards.

SUNUM is engaged in highly effective multidisciplinary research programs in advanced materials, nano-bio technology, nano-medicine, nano-electronics, nano-optics, micro/nano fluidics, micro/nano-electromechanically systems and renewable energy systems. The multi-disciplinary laboratories of SUNUM houses advanced capabilities and equipment such as atomic resolution imaging and chemical analysis, fast gene sequencing for different cells, deposition of multilayers of few atom thick metals and dielectrics. SUNUM infrastructure is flexible and open to improvements to allow configuration changes to address future needs. The research infrastructure of SUNUM is accessible to all researchers from all academic, public and industrial institutions.

Sabancı University is setting up a genuine example for multi-disciplinary studies by “creating and developing together” strategy and “no departments, no walls” approach. Combined synergistically with the research expertise of the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, SUNUM allows application oriented research.

SUNUM, in collaboration with academic and industrial partners, focuses on human-centric, safety-minded research and applications in advanced structural materials, healthcare, energy, and the environment, agriculture, food and defence areas.

SUNUM is becoming a key hub and a leading example for the implementation of “open innovation” and “innovation campus” concepts in Turkey by establishing precompetitive research consortiums and strategic research alliances with academic and industrial partners. Collaborative research efforts at SUNUM are led by drivers such as expanding scientific results, transforming knowledge into public service, creating economic value, initiating interdisciplinary studies and establishing academic and professional partnerships. SUNUM manages the translational research for the establishment of “start-up” and “spin-off” companies and the protection of intellectual property rights by patents.

Meral Yüce received her PhD in Biotechnology from Institute of Biotechnology, Ankara University, Turkey in 2011. Her PhD studies focused on electrochemical sensing strategies using low cost and robust microbial sources. She worked on holographic sensing models during her visit at Institute of Biotechnology and Chemical Engineering of Cambridge University, UK and also at MonoJO Company, Jordan in 2010-2011. She started working at SUNUM in late 2011 as a researcher where her studies have mainly focused on aptamer studies involving nanomaterials for sensing purposes. She gained hands on experience in synthetic affinity reagent selection methodologies when she was a visiting researcher at Leeds University studies, UK (2012-2013). Her current interdisciplinary research focus on DNA and RNA-based aptamer selection methodologies, development of aptamer-based fluorescent and plasmonic sensing platforms and employment of various nanomaterials in biotechnology applications.

Research infrastructure

The updated research infrastructure of SUNUM can be reached from the following link (

Most significant recently published papers:

  • Kurt, H. vd., 2016. Dual-excitation upconverting nanoparticle and quantum dot aptasensor for multiplexed food pathogen detection. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 81, ss.280–286.
  • Ani Akpinar, B. vd., 2015. Molecular organization and comparative analysis of chromosome 5B of the wild wheat ancestor Triticum dicoccoides. Scientific Reports, 5(April), s.10763.
  • Yüce, M., Ullah, N. & Budak, H., 2015. Trends in aptamer selection methods and applications. The Analyst, 140(16), ss.5379–5399.
  • Yüce, M., Uysal, E. & Budak, H., 2015. Amplification yield enhancement of short DNA templates using bulk and surface-attached amine-functionalized single-wall carbon nanotubes. Applied Surface Science, 349, ss.147–155.
  • Yuce, M. & Budak, H., 2014. Dispersion quality of amine functionalized multiwall carbon nanotubes plays critical roles in polymerase chain reaction enhancement. Journal of Nanoparticle Research, 16(12), s.2768.

Related research grants:

  • Development of Nanoparticle-Based Multiplexed Food Pathogen Biosensors Based on Aptamers

National Grant by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey

  • (COST, European Upconversion Network, CM1403)
  • Program Code: 3501, Grant ID: 114Z379 - Insight Into the Impacts and Action Mechanisms of SWCNTs in PCR as Nano-additives - National Grant by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey
  • Program Code: 1002, Grant ID: 114Z051 - High Affinity Aptamer Production for Disease Marker Proteins, FGFR2 and FGFR3 K650E - National Grant by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey
  • Program Code: 3001, Grant ID: 113Z611 - Exploiting Aptamers for Malaria Diagnosis and Cancer Therapy - International grant funded by British Council Higher Education Knowledge Partnership Program, Grant ID: TR/012012/KP19


COST Action CM1403 (2014-2018)

Chair: dr Hans Gorris (University of Regensburg, Germany)

Vice-Chair: prof.Tero Soukka (University of Turku, Finland)

COST Science Officer: Dr. Lucia Forzi (Bruseels, Belgium)

STSMs Manager: dr hab. Artur Bednarkiewicz (PAS & WCB EIT+, Poland)


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