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Bioassays on ultrasonically trapped microbead clusters in microfluidic systems

  • Thomas Laurell
  • Johan Nilsson
  • Klavs Jensen
  • Jed Harrison
  • Jörg Kutter
Publiceringsår: 2004
Språk: Engelska
Sidor: 327-329
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: Micro Total Analysis Systems 2004
Volym: 2
Dokumenttyp: Konferensbidrag
Förlag: Royal Society of Chemistry


The handling of biochemically functionalised beads or particles is becoming increasingly important in µTAS. Bead-based analysis of e.g. proteins can be made sensitive due to the large active surface area and flexible by chemical design of the bead surface. We have developed a microfluidic device utilising an array of integrated and individually controlled ultrasonic microtransducers for particle trapping [1]. Particles inserted in the device are subjected to acoustic radiation forces [2] confining them at localised trapping sites. We would now, for the first time at an international conference, like to present a technique for performing bioassays on such ultrasonically trapped beads in microfluidic systems. The microfluidic device is shown in Fig. 1, where the piezoceramic ultrasonic transducers can be seen in the channel crossings in the insert. The device is designed as an acoustic resonator, to obtain localised standing acoustic waves at each transducer with essentially one pressure node in the middle of the 72 µm deep channel when operated near 10 MHz. This configuration is chosen to keep trapped particles away from the interior surfaces of the device, thus enabling fast switching of beads with a minimum in carry-over between assays. The fluidic chip, shown in Fig. 2, is designed to allow injection of microbeads, washing fluid and sample to the three trapping sites. It has been shown that the microbead clusters, as shown in Fig. 3, can be trapped at considerably high perfusion rates, up to 10 µl/min, Fig 4. As a model bioassay, 6.7 µm biotin-covered beads (PC-B-6.0, Gerlinde Kisker, Germany) were injected and transported to one tapping site using washing fluid (water). Activating the transducer trapped the beads. A solution of FITC-tagged avidin was perfused over the bead bed at 3 µl/min, using the corresponding orthogonal sample channel. After 100 s the sample flow was turned off and the bead trap was washed by perfusing water at 3 µl/min. The fluorescence response from the trapped bead clusters was monitored during the assay, and the result is shown in Fig. 5. After excess avidin was washed from the bead trap, a measured step response . indicated that avidin had bound to the beads. Finally the possibility of moving trapped microbeads between the individually controlled trapping sites in the device is shown in Fig. 6, where the transducers are activated sequentially while keeping the bead carrying washing fluid at 3 µl/min during the experiment. Work in the near future will be focused on optimising the device with respect to the bioassay performance, and in a longer perspective on expanding the concept to two dimensions to enable a new dynamic mode of generating bioanalytical arrays.


  • Medical Engineering
  • Ultrasound
  • Trapping
  • PZT
  • Microparticles
  • Microbeads


Micro Total Analysis Systems 2004
  • ISBN: 0-85404-896-0

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