An integrated system for large volume sample processing at the point of care
Byrnes, Samantha Ann
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The emergence of rapid, user-friendly, point-of-care (POC) diagnostic systems is paving the way for better disease diagnosis and control. Lately, there has been a strong emphasis on developing molecular-based systems due to their potential for greatly increased sensitivity and specificity. One of the most critical aspects of designing practical diagnostic devices is the ability to perform sample preparation at the POC. Many sensitive systems have been developed, but few have successfully translated out of the laboratory and into clinical use, often due to the lack of testing and compatibility with realistic samples. Therefore, diagnostic devices that can process complex samples such as blood, urine, or environmental water are rarely available at the POC. Urine is simple to collect, making it an ideal sample for untrained users. A major challenge to processing urine for diagnostic tests, however, is the diluted nature of the sample. For accurate diagnosis, large volumes of urine (1–10 mL) are often required. Processing these volumes often relies on sample pre-treatment techniques that necessitate expensive equipment and highly trained personnel. To address these gaps, this dissertation details the development and integration of multiple sample preparation modules for large volume sample processing. The majority of this work will focus on urine-based diagnosis of chlamydia and gonorrhea, but these assays and the integrated device can serve as a platform for multiple sample types.
- Bioengineering