A Microfluidic Approach to Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assays
The Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) is a biochemical technique that is useful for diagnosing disease and infection by detecting antigens/antibodies in a sample. Studying assay design is important in designing an optimal and cost-effective assay which comprises short processing times, small reagent consumption, and portability. The primary objective of this study was to design and test a microfluidic chip to produce a rapid ELISA platform. A microfluidic device integrating six straight channels and six nitrocellulose strips was used as a platform to produce a rapid and semi-qualitative dot ELISA. Typical dot ELISA processing times are on the order of hours, but has been reduced here to 35 minutes. The same six channel microfluidic device with polystyrene strips in place of nitrocellulose strips was explored for its ability to produce a quantitative sandwich ELISA. The device produced indistinguishable results due to high noise levels which are thought to be a result of non-specific binding.