Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
PURITAN MEDICAL

Switch to CAD Technology Greatly Improves Lab-On-A-Chip Capability

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 12 May 2014
The lab-on-a-chip holds potential for reducing cost of medical diagnostics while expanding access to health care. Now scientists have developed computer aided design (CAD) software to enable far more than one or two tests on a single chip.

In the near future healthcare professionals may be able to routinely run clinical lab tests almost instantly on a digital microfluidic machine about the size of credit card. These lab-on-a-chips (LOCs) would not only be quick—results available in minutes—but also inexpensive and portable. They could be used at point-of-care, and even at long distance from the nearest medical clinic.

But as powerful as they may be, they could be far better, said Shiyan Hu, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Michigan Technological University (MTU; Houghton, MI, USA). Current LOCs can generally run no more than a test or two because the chips are designed manually. If the LOCs were made using computer-aided design (CAD), you could run dozens of tests with, for example, a single drop of blood. “In a very short time, you could test for many conditions,” said Prof. Hu; “This really would be an entire lab on a chip.” With PhD student Chen Liao, Prof. Hu has taken the first step. “We have developed software to design the hardware,” he said.

Their work, described in, and featured on the cover of, the March, 2014, edition of the journal IEEE Transactions on Nanobiosciences, focuses on routing a droplet of blood or other fluid through each test on the chip efficiently while avoiding contamination. A key part in LOC CAD is physical-level synthesis. It includes the LOC placement and routing, where placement is to determine the physical location and the starting time of each operation, and routing is to transport each droplet from the source to the destination.

“It has taken us four years to do the software, but to manufacture the LOC would be inexpensive,” said Prof. Hu; “The materials are very cheap, and the results are more accurate than a conventional lab’s.” Prof. Hu plans to fabricate their own biochip using their software.

Related Links:

Michigan Technological University



Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel
Image: Researchers have generated disease-free stem cells from patients with mitochondrial disease that can be converted into any cell type including neuronal progenitors (left) or heart cells (right). These could potentially be used for future transplantation into patients (Photo courtesy of Salk Institute of Biological Studies).

Methods Developed to Generate Normal Stem Cells from Patients with Mitochondrial Defects

A recent paper described two methods for converting cells from patients with mitochondrial defects into normal pluripotent stem cells that could be induced to differentiate into several different types of tissues.... Read more

Drug Discovery

view channel
Image: A new micelle delivery system for the protective polyphenols resveratrol and quercetin (mRQ) may have value in cancer chemotherapy (Photo courtesy of Oregon State University).

Micelles Containing Resveratrol and Quercetin Reverse Doxorubicin Cardiotoxicity

Cancer researchers blocked the toxic effects of the cancer drug doxorubicin (DOX) by administering it together with the plant antioxidants resveratrol and quercetin. Although in use for more than 40... Read more

Business

view channel

Teva Buys Allergan Generic Business Unit

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries (Petah Tikva, Israel) has bought the Allergan (Irvine, CA, USA) generic drugs business for USD 40.5 billion in cash and stock, solidifying its position as the world's largest generic drug maker. Under the terms of the agreement, Teva will pay USD 33.75 billion in cash and USD 6.... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2015 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.