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NanoPoreFab Report Summary

Project ID: 674038

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - NanoPoreFab (On-chip fabrication of solid state nanopores for high throughput single molecule analysis)

Reporting period: 2015-06-01 to 2015-11-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Nanopore sensing has a broad range of potential applications (e.g. detection of trace amounts of substances in drug delivery/cancer diagnosis/tests for nanotoxicity and infectious diseases, next generation of DNA sequencing and protein fingerprinting) due to its outstanding sensitivity for label-free single molecule analysis. The lack of a reliable high throughput fabrication process for uniformly sized nanopores has become a serious bottleneck for research, industry and economy. Within a feasibility study in the frame of the SME-Instrument Phase I programme, Ionera has combined a nano-fabrication process recently developed on a laboratory scale with its proprietary MECA technology platform and delivered the proof of principle for a parallel, industrially applicable fabrication of solid state nanopores. This was accompanied by an assessment of the economic viability of a high throughput platform for in situ nanopore fabrication and analysis.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

A technical feasibility study on the technical realization of the parallel fabrication of single nanopore arrays on MECA chips has been conducted and the proof of principle for the technical feasibility of the idea has been achieved. The business idea schemed out in the proposal for the SME instruments phase 1 work programme has been further developed towards a elaborated business plan. As the major result the economic viability of the idea has been proven feasible.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Nanopore analysis with solid state nanopores in a high throughput frame has been a global goal since the first fundamental findings 20 years ago. Despite a plethora of potential applications, the breakthrough of this technology lags expectations due to the absence of the simple, parallel and cost-efficient fabrication process necessary to elevate nanopore analysis to an industrial level. Based on the technical and economic feasibility study conducted within the SME instrument phase I project NanoPoreFab, continued R&D resulting in a high throughput solid state nanopore analysis platform would have a tremendous impact on the biotechnological and pharmaceutical industrial sector of European industry in its competitiveness in a crucial area and would catalyze new research and business opportunities in the field of life sciences e.g. personalized medicine, food and general product security as well as field environmental analysis within Europe.

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