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Continuous and High-Throughput Electromechanical Lysis of Bacterial Pathogens Using Ion Concentration Polarization

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journal contribution
posted on 01.12.2017, 00:00 authored by Minseok Kim, Lidan Wu, Bumjoo Kim, Deborah T. Hung, Jongyoon Han
Electrical lysis of mammalian cells has been a preferred method in microfluidic platforms because of its simple implementation and rapid recovery of lysates without additional reagents. However, bacterial lysis typically requires at least a 10-fold higher electric field (∼10 kV/cm), resulting in various technical difficulties. Here, we present a novel, low-field-enabled electromechanical lysis mechanism of bacterial cells using electroconvective vortices near ion selective materials. The vortex-assisted lysis only requires a field strength of ∼100 V/cm, yet it efficiently recovers proteins and nucleic acids from a variety of pathogenic bacteria and operates in a continuous and ultrahigh-throughput (>1 mL/min) manner. Therefore, we believe that the electromechanical lysis will not only facilitate microfluidic bacterial sensing and analysis but also various high-volume applications such as the energy-efficient recovery of valuable metabolites in biorefinery pharmaceutical industries and the disinfection of large-volume fluid for the water and food industries.