Thermo Action

Researchers at MIT and elsewhere have developed a new way of driving fluid droplets across surfaces in a precisely controlled way. The method could open up new possibilities for highly adaptable microfluidic devices, as well as for de-icing technologies, self-cleaning surfaces, and highly efficient condensers. Read more

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Antiresonant Optical Waveguides

Over the last few years, much effort has been devoted to the development of so-called lab-on-chip (LOC) systems that are based on optical detection methods. Applications of these systems include environmental monitoring, health care, biosensing, and industrial analysis. To carry out complete assays with LOC devices, it is necessary to integrate a wide variety of [..]

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A portable microscope, developed as part of a scalable, point-of-care, label-free microarray platform, may offer more rapid detection of sepsis and other infections caused by bacteria, ultimately saving millions of lives each year. The device combines photonics technology, microfluidics and molecular biology to produce sample-to-result processing up to 50 times faster than current testing techniques.. [..]

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For medics on the battlefield and doctors in remote or developing parts of the world, getting rapid access to the drugs needed to treat patients can be challenging. Biopharmaceutical drugs, which are used in a wide range of therapies including vaccines and treatments for diabetes and cancer, are typically produced in large, centralized fermentation plants. [..]

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A team of researchers from Switzerland’s Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) has developed a short-pulse laser-based technique for carving 3-D tunnel-like microfluidic structures in cell-culture hydrogels. They say that that their technique has the potential to advance tissue engineering by creating biocompatible structures that can influence cell function and promote tissue formation. Read more

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Highly sensitive and rapid detection of blood glucose is a diagnostic necessity in medicine. For instance, lack of insulin and too much blood sugar are two main causes of diabetes, both of which can be detected by measuring blood glucose. Now, using fiber optics and microfluidics, researchers are developing… Read more

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With certain cancers, such as ovarian cancers, a significant number of patients are non-responsive to the standard chemotherapy treatment. These patients, therefore, experience the negative side effects of chemotherapy without clinical benefits. With the ever-increasing number of available anti-cancer drug alternatives to chemotherapy…. Read more

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A technique for producing nanoparticles that relies on microfluidics — the manipulation of tiny fluid droplets in narrow channels — shows promise for transforming expensive, batch-by-batch nanoparticle production into large-scale automated assembly. Read more

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Transparent metamaterials under development could enable computer chips and interconnecting circuits that use light instead of electrons to process and transmit data, representing a potential leap in performance. Read more

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The 1970s witnessed both the initial miniaturization of devices (i.e., toward the nanoscale) and the simultaneous birth of heterostructures. In nanoscale materials, radical changes in the characteristics of particles are observed as they move from classical to quantum behavior. Read more

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Electrons are so 20th century. In the 21st century, photonic devices, which use light to transport large amounts of information quickly, will enhance or even replace the electronic devices that are ubiquitous in our lives today. But there’s a step needed before optical connections can be integrated into telecommunications systems and computers: researchers need to [..]

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Kidney stones are often no larger than a grain of rice, yet some can grow to measure several centimeters in diameter. Sometimes, a kidney stone might block the ureter, causing colic pain in the flank. If it cannot be dissolved, the kidney stone is treated using extracorporeal shock-wave therapy or by applying minimally invasive endoscopic [..]

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A promising solution rests at the intersection of engineering and biology: microfluidics. Using tiny customized remixes of the classic biological petri dish, researchers can simulate conditions found in a body and control for specific variables such as enzyme changes or the presence of growth factors. In much the same way that NASA used simulations on [..]

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An international team of researchers has developed a portable device for placing on the fingertip that counts white blood cells without a blood test. The technology, which combines an optical sensor with algorithms, is designed for use on chemotherapy patients, who could know their immune system levels in real time. It could also have utility [..]

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Scientists at four U.S. institutions have developed a chip-based device that uses optical detection to sense infection by the deadly Ebola virus. The device, which ingeniously combines microfluidics and optics in a modular setup, reportedly can achieve sensitivities and dynamic range comparable to those of commonly used, far more complex and time-consuming lab techniques. Read [..]

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Engineers at Rutgers University have designed a three-inch long, and one-inch wide device that can replace benchtop assays and perform complex analyses using 90 percent less sample fluid than a traditional test. The new device uses microfluidics technology and could significantly reduce the cost of sophisticated tests for diseases such as HIV, Lyme disease and [..]

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Researchers have developed a microfluidic device that quickly builds packages of DNA and delivers them into bacteria or yeast for further testing. Building microbes that could act as factories for making fuels or pharmaceuticals requires incorporating novel DNA sequences into the cells. Read more here

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