Tuesday, February 08, 2011

#MEMS: "Disposable Lab-on-a-Chip Cures Diagnostic Debacle"

For over a decade, the laboratory on-a-chip has been touted as a solution to world-health problems, promising to provide affordable medical diagnostics even in remote areas. Unfortunately, their cost has never been reduced enough to realize the dream—until now. Look for disposable lab-on-a-chip technologies to greatly expand the number of medical diagnostics that can be performed, like home pregnancy tests, without a prescription. R. Colin Johnson @NextGenLog

Purdue University researchers have invented an inexpensive paper lab-on-chip using microfluidics to flow a patient sample to functionalized dots that glow for rapid medical diagnostics and chemical analysis. (Source: Purdue University)

Researchers at Purdue University's Birck Nanotechnology Center have created a dirt-cheap lab-on-a-chip technology that harnesses microfluidics to instantly diagnose medical conditions. The "labs" are inexpensive enough to be thrown away after use...instead of fabricating microfluidic channels on silicon or glass substrates with semiconductor equipment, uses lasers to make the tiny channels on cheap paper substrates. The result is a device that can test for dozens of maladies simultaneously, and yet it is inexpensive enough to throw away after a single use...
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