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Clinical Microfluidics

Clinical diagnostics is one of the fastest developing areas for microfluidic applications. Point-of-care (POC) blood analysis represents a rapidly growing market with the potential to reshape the delivery of health care. Microfluidics has the potential to spur the development of protocols and affordable instruments for specific blood analyses with minimal perturbation of individual cell populations. Current research at the Clinical microfluidics lab involves development of microfluidic point-of-care devices for blood diagnostics with focus on sample preparation for bacteria isolation from whole blood for sepsis diagnostics; cell sorting for (i)cancer, (ii)allergy and (iii)HIV diagnostics;  and DNA analysis (for low cost molecular diagnostics).  The Clinical microfluidics group has a number of national and international collaboration projects, and we are currently coordinating one EU FP7 project (InTopSens) and WP leader in additional two EU FP7 projects (Digital Sequencing and RAPP-ID).

We have also developed a microwell chip (672 wells of 500 nl) consisting of glass and silicon, with a spacing between wells that is compatible with automatic sorting of single cells into individual wells. This chip has been applied in many different biological studies, for example single leukemic non-adherent cancer cells were investigated for their heterogeneity in cell proliferation. The chip has subsequently also shown potential in protein analysis, mutation analysis by PCR, microfluidic integration and also for stem cell research. The combination of 1) the hundreds of experiments that can be run simultaneously in the chip and 2) the small volume per well saving reagent cost in molecule screens, makes the microwell chip a perfect match in cell research where high-throughput analysis is of utmost interest and the cellular effects of expensive molecules often are to be studied.

Figure 2. Microwell chip for single cell analysis
Belongs to: Department of Protein Science
Last changed: Jan 30, 2013