New device to diagnose Heart Attack

IIT researchers enhances microfluidic bio-sensor

Presence or absence of some molecules, or characteristic changes, in the blood or other body fluids are signatures of abnormalities or indicators of diseases. These natural indicators are Biomarkers.

Cardiac troponin I – cardiac regulatory protein, widely used as a biomarker for early diagnosis of myocardial infarction aka heart attack. Presence of higher concentration of cardiac troponin I in the blood serum confirms heart attack.

Globally, microfluidic biosensors are utilised for this electrochemical detection. But existing devices have limitations in terms of sensitivity and detection time. They also fail to detect biomarkers if the concentration is below 0.02 nanogram per ml.

In order to answer this issue, a team of IIT researchers has come up with a new microfluidic device. This new device is promising the diagnosis in less than three minutes and that too with the concentration as low as 0.005 nanograms per ml.

“Our device can detect the biomarker over a wide range — from 0.005-100 nanogram per ml,”

Corresponding Author

But how?

Quick detection and higher sensitivity of this new device are due to the presence of nanospheres. With larger surface areas of nanospheres, more antibodies can accommodate on its surface. More antibodies can bind with more biomarker during the diagnosis process, reducing the detection time. The electrode of the biofluidic device has the coating of this nanospheres.

Biomarker present in the patient’s serum will get binds with the antibodies in the nanospheres, causing a change in the current flow of biosensor in microampere scale.

The possibilities of developing this new microfluidic device in a combat size, not only reduce the cardiac diagnosis time but also make the diagnosis a bedside process.

This new findings were published in the Journal of Materials Chemistry B.

Journal Source: Journal of Materials Chemistry B
DOI: 10.1039/C9TB0012

Written by M R Raghul

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