3µP: Multi-Reaction, Multi-Sample Microfluidic Platform

Two former partners of 4M (Fraunhofer IZM, FEMTO-ST) have joined forces to develop a microfluidic platform for multiple samples with multiple analytes to run diagnostic analysis.

The project is funded by ANR and BMBF under the French-German Carnot-Fraunhofer industry-oriented research Programme.

The market for microfluidic diagnostic devices is expected to grow to ~5bn USD in 2015, with annual growth rates predicted up to 18%. This market is not addressing as of now the novel opportunities for personalized diagnostics and therapy (theranostics), which will provide additionally revenue to the industrial partners focusing on that field of interest.

The scientific achievements will further the RNA based diagnostics, supporting fast and minimally invasive diagnostics using biomarkers and Point of Care analysis. Patients need not to wait days for diagnostic results, quickly spreading pandemics can be identified fast and contained regionally, with optimum medication provided to the sick.

The target platform intends to integrate conventional microfluidics with electrowetting assisted droplet handling into a diagnostic system, separating a cheap, disposable part from the multiple use fluidic carrier delivering the required analytes. The choice of droplet based microfluidics on the disposable part, controlled by electric fields, enables extremely fast adaption by modifying the protocol software only to run multiple analysis routines without the need for individual channel geometries and analyte injection points. Final analysis is currently planned to use fluorescence detection but future concepts may involve CNT based techniques, aptamers or pure electronic detection schemes. The developed platform will provide a basis for industrial entrepreneurs to build their innovative diagnostic systems on.

Contacts: Erik Jung and/or Chantal Khan Malek.

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