Project results
The MicroActive project has during the three year project period developed and manufactured a table-top instrument for molecular diagnostics with corresponding disposable microfluidic chips. Microfluidics and biotechnology have formed the basis for the development. Proof-ofprinciple clinical patient diagnostics have been performed for a group of viruses, which causes cervical cancer, using the new instrument and new microfluidic chips. On-chip biological procedures have been compared to “gold standard” laboratory procedures.

The objective of the project was to develop an instrument for activation of microfluidic chips, one chip for sample preparation and nucleic acid purification of patient samples and another chip for NASBA amplification and detection of eight different viruses simultaneously. This has been achieved by developing two lab-on-a-chip systems and two analytical instruments (designed to be put together). Chips and instruments have been used to performe more than 300 biological analysis on clinical samples.

The project has achieved state-of-the-art scientific results in all of the disciplines involved. This has been proven by accepted publications on microfluidics, on-chip sample reparation, and miniaturized nucleic acid amplification and on clinical comparison of HPV detection technologies in international journals and at international conferences. Four publications are under preparation at the closing of the project: A paper on the method for biocompatible lamination of polymer microchips, a paper on automatic sample preparation on-chip, one on parallel actuation of nanoliter sized plugs and spotting in micro-channels and one paper on the total analysis system.

Microfluidics and biotechnology have formed the basis for the development of the table-top instrument to be used for molecular diagnostics. Both instruments and chips are developed for production and for future use in a commercial system. 

Published June 17, 2006

Sample preparation instrument
Operating device for the sample preparation chip (© IMM)

NASBA instrument

Operating device for amplification and detection chip (NASBA) (© SINTEF)