Microfluidic Sample Preparation And Impedimetric Detection Of Small Molecules

Tech ID: 17945 / UC Case 2008-083-0


UC Berkeley researchers have previously presented a unique label-free method to detect biomolecular binding based on impedance changes using microparticles or nanoparticles in microfluidic channels. This method requires no florescent labeling of analyte and allows a simple readout at a given frequency. This demonstrated microfluidic integration of the nanocavity system is also advantageous, allowing easy introduction of analyte solution and measurement buffer. Because the detection technique is essentially label-free and just depends on the specific binding of anibody-antigen, DNA-DNA, DNA-RNA, DNA-protein, antibody-small molecule, or antibody-cell, this invention could be used to diagnose virtually any disease.

Researchers at UC Berkeley have expanded upon this innovation to demonstrate the ability to sequentially load different sized and different types of beads into a microfluidic channel. This has numerous applications, including the ability to successively capture smaller and smaller beads that otherwise would be impossible to capture. In addition, the cells can be mechanically lysed.


On-chip control experiments
Sample preparation for diagnostics


Creates different layers of beads in a continuous column
Both different sized beads and different types of beads can be layered
Can capture beads down to 800 nm in diameter by purely physical means
Can perform multiple captures within a single channel
Could be used to diagnose virtually any disease


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  • DiCarlo, Dino
  • Lee, Luke P.
  • Nevill, Joshua T.
  • Toriello, Nicholas

Other Information


point of use, detection, equipment, epidemiology, cell line, biochip, biochip, bioinformatic, screen, target validation, diagnostic, diagnostic tool, assay, antibody, detection, analytical, healthcare, target, screening, biochip

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