Biosensors & bioelectronics

Autonomous capillary microfluidic system with embedded optics for improved troponin I cardiac biomarker detection.

PMID 24934750


Cardiovascular diseases are the most prevalent medical conditions affecting the modern world, reducing the quality of life for those affected and causing an ever increasing burden on clinical resources. Cardiac biomarkers are crucial in the diagnosis and management of patient outcomes. In that respect, such proteins are desirable to be measured at the point of care, overcoming the shortcomings of current instrumentation. We present a CO2 laser engraving technique for the rapid prototyping of a polymeric autonomous capillary system with embedded on-chip planar lenses and biosensing elements, the first step towards a fully miniaturised and integrated cardiac biosensing platform. The system has been applied to the detection of cardiac Troponin I, the gold standard biomarker for the diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction. The devised lab-on-a-chip device was demonstrated to have 24 pg/ml limit of detection, which is well within the minimum threshold for clinically applicable concentrations. Assays were completed within approximately 7-9 min. Initial results suggest that, given the portability, low power consumption and high sensitivity of the device, this technology could be developed further into point of care instrumentation useful in the diagnosis of various forms of cardiovascular diseases.