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Proceedings Paper

Microfluidic diagnostics for low-resource settings
Author(s): Kenneth R. Hawkins; Bernhard H. Weigl
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Paper Abstract

Diagnostics for low-resource settings need to be foremost inexpensive, but also accurate, reliable, rugged and suited to the contexts of the developing world. Diagnostics for global health, based on minimally-instrumented, microfluidicsbased platforms employing low-cost disposables, has become a very active research area recently-thanks, in part, to new funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, and other sources. This has led to a number of interesting prototype devices that are now in advanced development or clinical validation. These devices include disposables and instruments that perform multiplexed PCR-based assays for enteric, febrile, and vaginal diseases, as well as immunoassays for diseases such as malaria, HIV, and various sexually transmitted diseases. More recently, instrument-free diagnostic disposables based on isothermal nucleic-acid amplification have been developed. Regardless of platform, however, the search for truly low-cost manufacturing methods that would enable affordable systems (at volume, in the appropriate context) remains a significant challenge. Here we give an overview of existing platform development efforts, present some original research in this area at PATH, and reiterate a call to action for more.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 February 2010
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 7593, Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems VIII, 75930L (17 February 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.845500
Show Author Affiliations
Kenneth R. Hawkins, PATH (United States)
Bernhard H. Weigl, PATH (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7593:
Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems VIII
Holger Becker; Wanjun Wang, Editor(s)

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