A Method and Design for Performing Rapid Parallel Microfluidic Molecular Affinity

Introduction Point-of-care diagnostic testing, or testing performed at the patient bedside, allows physicians to diagnose patients more rapidly than traditional laboratory-based testing. Rapid results can enable better patient management decisions, improved patient outcomes, and a reduction in the overall cost of care. Technology description UW researchers have developed a method and design for performing rapid molecular binding assays, including immunoassays, and in particular, sandwich immunoassays. The sample is loaded on to the first membrane by pumping it through said first membrane, where sample analyte molecules become bound to the capture molecules immobilized on that membrane. Fluid is then pushed through the second membrane to release the secondary capture molecules and transport them to the first membrane to
'”sandwich” the analyte molecules. The device allows the simultaneous performance of dozens of immunoassays in a minimum of time using a minimum of sample volume and in a minimal space. This device is particularly well adapted for performance of multiple immunoassays on an inexpensive polymeric disposable device that may be read out directly or using an optical reader. This disposable polymeric immunoassay system could also be coupled to other types of assays in a single integrated device. Business Opportunity Developing countries have limited resources and lack facilities to test patients whose symptoms indicate they may have a life-threatening infectious disease. Domestically, rising health costs have created new expectations in hospitals: shortened patient stays, and a movement from an inpatient to an outpatient or ambulatory setting. The need to maintain quality test results, while achieving shorter turn around times, lowering costs through faster discharges and countering personnel shortages, has resulted in hospitals developing a primary focus on point of care testing as a mechanism to accomplish these goals. Intellectual Property Position International and U.S. patent applications are pending. Related Publication(s)
Yager, P., T. Edwards, et al. (2006). "Microfluidic diagnostic technologies for global public health." Nature 442(7101): 412-418. For more information on this technology contact:
Kelly Fitzgerald, Ph.D. Technology Manager UW TechTransfer, Invention Licensing kafg@u.washington.edu 206-543-3970

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