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Integration of Nanomechanical Resonators in Microfluidic Systems for Specific Protein Detection Open Access


Other title
Nanoelectromechanical systems
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Ko, Wooree
Supervisor and department
Evoy, Stephane (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Backhouse, Chris (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Sigurdson, Lorenz (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Elliott, Duncan (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
Nanomechanical resonators offer a pathway towards highly sensitive and label-free detection of biomolecules by transducing the mass of bound analytes into resonant frequency shifts. Zeptogram level and even single cell detections have been successfully achieved by others. However, these experiments have been performed through traditional “dip-and-dry” method, requiring the use of a large quantity of analyte. Such a system is not readily amenable to automation, is subject to contamination and is prone to inter-run variation. Integration of nanomechanical resonators into a microfluidic system would facilitate sample delivery and provide a stable Lab-On-a-Chip (LOC) system that could be effectively used for diagnostic tests. There have been a few demonstrations of integrating nanomechanical resonators with microfuidic systems. However, these works involved external syringe pumps and valves for sample delivery which make their system bulky, complex and not suitable for point-of-care testing applications. Here we have developed a nanomechanical resonator-based microfluidic system that delivers sample using on-chip automated pump and valve systems and that demonstrates the biosensing capabilities with the limit of detection in femtogram range using minute amount of sample. To our best of knowledge, this is the first integration of nanoresonator-based sensing platform with the automated on-chip sample delivery system. Such integration can provide the system with simplicity, portability and potential realization as easily accessible point-of-care diagnostic tools.
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