We propose the development of new electrochemical techniques for health and life sciences applications in Lab-on-a-Chip devices. A Scanning ElectroChemical Microscope (SECM) will be used to study surface properties, such as local consumption and/or release of electroactive chemical compounds by (single) cells by electrochemical sensing, new detection methods for proteins using redox cycling, and new separation methods for DNA exploiting nanoscale electrical field gradients. The ability to generate and control electrical fields (and gradients) at the scale of the size of biomolecules using nanostructures, and the simple translation of novel electrical methods into practical Lab-on-a-Chip devices will create a breakthrough in bioanalytical methods. The knowledge and expertise obtained from SECM experimentation will be used to design and realize Labs-on-a-Chip that can be used for efficient production of drugs by electrofused cells, for early biomarker detection using nanowires and nano-spaced electrodes (Point-of-Care application), and rapid DNA analysis using nanofluidic structures. Besides this, the results can have great benefits for study of embryonic cell growth and for advanced tissue engineering. The results will be translated into devices and systems that can be used in Point-of-Care (POC) applications and will bring this area a big step closer to successful commercialization.
Fields of science
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