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A Passive Mixing Microfluidic Urinary Albumin Chip for Chronic Kidney Disease Assessment

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journal contribution
posted on 16.10.2018 by Jiandong Wu, Dumitru Tomsa, Michael Zhang, Paul Komenda, Navdeep Tangri, Claudio Rigatto, Francis Lin
Urinary albumin level is an important indicator of kidney damage in chronic kidney disease (CKD) but effective routine albumin detection tools are lacking. In this paper, we developed a low-cost and high accuracy microfluidic urinary albumin chip (UAL-Chip) to rapidly measure albumin in urine. The UAL-Chip offers three major features: (1) we incorporated a fluorescent reaction assay into the chip to improve the detection accuracy; (2) we constructed a passive and continuous mixing module in the chip that provides user-friendly operation and greater signal stability; (3) we applied a pressure-balancing strategy based on the immiscible oil coverage that achieves precise control of the sample-dye mixing ratio. We validated the UAL-Chip using both albumin standards and urine samples from 12 CKD patients and achieved an estimated limit of detection (LOD) of 5.2 μg/mL. The albumin levels in CKD patients’ urine samples measured by UAL-Chip is consistent with the traditional well-plate measurements and clinical results. We foresee the potential of extending this passive and precise mixing platform to assess various disease biomarkers.

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