Utilizing microfluidic technologies as a tool for progressing medical research
You are cordially invited to the Microfluidics Congress: USA in Philadelphia on 24th – 26th July 2017. Join our community of leading academics and scientists from biotechnology & pharmaceuticals organizations who are working to transform healthcare by harnessing the developments of these new and overlapping technologies.
Microfluidics is a rapidly developing area of research, and scientists are continually discovering the wide range of possibilities the technology can provide. At the intersection of engineering, physics, chemistry, nanotechnology, and biotechnology, microfluidics is revolutionizing the way patients are diagnosed, monitored and treated, and is unlocking the potential for reduced reagent consumption and thus, cost.
The conference will examine the latest developments in the technologies and techniques being used for progressing medical research, as well as the challenges and future of microfluidics. Registration is now open here.
Some of the topics to be covered:
• Point-of-care diagnostics
• Droplet microfluidics
• Isolation and analysis of CTCs
• 3D printing of microfluidic devices
• Single-cell analysis
• Commercialization and venture capitalism
Keynote speakers will include Lab on a Chip Editor-in-Chief Abraham Lee and Advisory Board member George Whitesides. See the agenda for further details.
Enhance your itinerary with pre & post event workshops. Lab on a Chip Advisory Board member Holger Becker (microfluidic ChipShop GmbH), will lead a 4 hour workshop on Lab-on-a-Chip technologies as an enabling technology for new product development in diagnostics and the life sciences.
Following the success of Peer Review Week in September 2016 (dedicated to reviewer recognition) during which we published a list of our top reviewers, we are delighted to announce that we will continue to recognise the contribution that our reviewers make to the journal by announcing our Outstanding Reviewers each year.
We would like to highlight the Outstanding Reviewers for Lab on a Chip in 2016, as selected by the editorial team, for their significant contribution to the journal. The reviewers have been chosen based on the number, timeliness and quality of the reports completed over the last 12 months.
We would like to say a big thank you to those individuals listed here as well as to all of the reviewers that have supported the journal. Each Outstanding Reviewer will receive a certificate to give recognition for their significant contribution.
Professor Guoqing Hu, Institute of Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Dr Kosuke Ino, Tohoku University
Professor Daniel Irimia, Harvard Medical School
Dr Sung Jae Kim, Seoul National University
Professor Chang Lu, Virginia Tech
Dr Julien Reboud, University of Glasgow
Dr Kangning Ren, Hong Kong Baptist University
Dr Yu-suke Torisawa, Kyoto Daigaku
Dr Qian Wang, Ohio State University
Dr Edmond Young, University of Toronto
We would also like to thank the Lab on a Chip board and the lab-on-a-chip community for their continued support of the journal, as authors, reviewers and readers.
You have worked hard all year and wanted to treat yourself with something different for the summer. You decided to arrange a journey to South-Africa to enjoy the beautiful natural scenery. Discovering the range of wildlife in immense national parks, hiking in mountains, and meeting with warm locals made your journey unforgettable. You arrived at one of the best photography spots in a national park just before the sunset. While focussing on capturing the best image from the picturesque scenery, you got bitten by a Marsh mosquito, perhaps infected with a Plasmodium falciparum parasite. This parasite is known for causing malaria, the most significant parasitic disease of humans. You are not the only one: approximately 30,000 travellers from industrialized countries contract malaria each year. During the next 14 days, this parasite will differentiate and proliferate in the body. It will invade and destroy the red blood cells, eventually affecting the liver, spleen, and brain functionality. A few days after the bite, you found a small-scale laboratory for the malaria diagnosis test, but there was a problem: this laboratory can detect malaria only if you have 50-100 parasites per microliter of blood, occurring when the patient carries the parasite for weeks. You, then, had to find a larger laboratory equipped with a benchtop loop-mediated isothermal DNA amplification (LAMP) system, which can detect 1 malaria parasite per microlitre of blood. You wished there was a highly sensitive device for malaria diagnosis at the point of need. Well, we might have some good news for you.
Modern nucleic acid testing methods of malaria detection, such as LAMP, enable high sensitivity, high specificity, robust, and rapid analyses for asymptomatic infections. As performing these methods requires bulky and costly peripheral equipment and trained technicians, access to such equipment in rural areas is unlikely. Fortunately, researchers in Pennsylvania State University recently introduced a stand-alone, portable, and high sensitivity system that can perform “sample-in-answer-out” analyses. The system consists of a compact disc and a reader unit (Figure 1). The compact disc includes valves and microfluidic channels, where the blood sample is processed using magnetic beads. The reader unit can automatically perform all analysis steps including DNA purification, elution, amplification, and real-time detection. For a real demonstration of how the test is performed, the movie included below is well worth the watch. Test results can be displayed on a LCD screen or a smartphone within 40 minutes. The system can detect down to 0.6 parasites per microliter of blood. Each test costs around $1. With these specifications, this technology has the opportunity to create a new paradigm in molecular diagnosis at the point of care.
Figure 1. Schematic view of an assembled compact disc made of PMMA; AnyMDX reading unit consisting of a magnet, heater plate, optical detection system, and LCD screen; and the illustration of integrated sample processing steps on the compact disc. The technique is based on DNA-carrying magnetic beads actuated against stationary reagent droplets.
To download the full article for free* click the link below:
Burcu Gumuscu is a postdoctoral fellow in BIOS Lab on a Chip Group at University of Twente in The Netherlands. Her research interests includedevelopment of microfluidic devices for next generation sequencing, compartmentalized organ-on-chip studies, and desalination of water on the microscale.
We are delighted to announce our new Associate Editor – Hang Lu!
Hang Lu is the Love Family Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Georgia Tech. She graduated summa cum laude from UIUC with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering, and obtained her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering in 2003 from MIT working with Klavs Jensen and Martin Schmidt. Before starting at Georgia Tech in 2005, she was a postdoc with neurogeneticist Cori Bargmann at UCSF and Rockefeller U. Her current research interests are microfluidics and its applications in neurobiology, systems biology, cancer, and biotechnology.
Hang has previously been a member of the Lab on a Chip Advisory Board. You can read some of her recent publications in the Journal below.
Hang will be handling papers from 1st February 2017, so submit your best work to her!