Microfluidics for mobile health
We are working on the implementation of biological assays on microfluidics for point-of-care diagnostic applications. Originally supported by the Swiss Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) in partnership with the University Hospital of Basel, this research has now branched out into various directions. One of them was a FP7 EU project addressing respiratory tract infections and other projects involving various diagnostic and semiconductor companies. In addition, this research is part of the new IBM Research Frontiers Institute.
Our approach employs a library of microfluidic elements and benefits from pioneering contributions we have made with capillary-driven microfluidics and ultra-miniaturized immunoassays. We typically integrate reagents and receptors for analytes in microfluidic chips for performing immunoassays and recently started to integrate solid-state sensors into the chips in collaboration with the IBM Watson Research Center.
Our vision is to enable quantitative diagnostics and to connect microfluidic chips to smartphones for fast and convenient analysis of numerous samples. Our roadmap includes adding security and “intelligence” to these very precise microfluidic chips. Furthermore, we think this technology can generate high-value, critical data for many scenarios involving Watson Health and IBM’s capabilities.
By tracking and controlling liquid flow on the picoliter level, we endeavor to achieve an unprecedented level of control and flexibility with this microfluidic technology. This area is researched in part via a Marie Curie Fellowship to Dr. Arango.
- Yulieth Cristina Arango
Marie Curie Fellow researcher