Assay development is a long, iterative, and often frustrating experience. Currently dominated by existing lab equipment such as microtiter plates, pipettes, and test tubes, lead to long assay times and consume large precious sample volumes. Today’s assay requirements are also heading toward higher sensitivity and sensitivity, such as single cell analysis and protein-protein interactions.
The scientific research community and commercial life science companies, pharmaceuticals, and POC providers have realized the need for miniaturizing assays through the use of microfluidics and nanofluidics. Running assays at microfluidic scale offers significant benefits over their bench-top counterparts, including lower sample and reagent use, faster assay times and higher sensitivity and specificity analyses.
Integrating microfluidic components onto a single chip – commonly known as Lab-on-a-Chip (LoC) technologies – have recently been used in a multitude of applications, including
- drug discovery
- clinical diagnostics
- cell biology
Unfortunately, current LoC devices are assay-specific and are custom built for each single experiment. Performing a new experiment requires the life scientist to endure the time-consuming process of designing, fabricating, and testing a chip before conducting the actual experiment. This prolonged cycle can take months to complete, increasing time-to-market, effort, and cost. Similarly, minor modifications to an assay protocol re-incur the overheads of the design cycle.
Microfluidic Innovations is leading a paradigm shift in assay development and has developed the first multi-purpose, software-programmable microfluidic LoC (SPLoC). Instead of designing their assay-specific chips, assay developers will be able to use a single chip, and simply write or download a program for each experiment. Analogous to developing a protocol for your assay, and manually performing the steps, or setting up automation equipment to run the assay, our patent-pending technology automatically translates the program into microfluidic steps and automatically runs the assay for you, just at the click of a button!
Example assays that have been developed using our platform include:
- Glucose level testing
- Particle sorting
- Enzyme kinetics
- Bacteria culturing and synchronization
Our system can cater to wide market segments, including CROs, pharmaceuticals and academic research. Learn more about our AssayMark Platform or contact us to learn how MI can help you reduce time, cost and effort for assay development.
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