Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
RNAi
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

New Portable Device Enables RNA Detection from Ultra-Small Sample

Published: Friday, November 09, 2012
Last Updated: Friday, November 09, 2012
Bookmark and Share
A new power-free microfluidic chip developed by researchers at the RIKEN Advanced Science Institute (ASI) enables detection of microRNA from extremely small sample volume in only 20 minutes.

By drastically reducing the time and quantity of sample required for detection, the chip lays the groundwork for early-stage point-of-care diagnosis of diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer's.

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, non-coding RNA molecules that regulate gene expression in a wide range of biological processes including development, cell proliferation, differentiation and cell death (apoptosis). Concentration of certain miRNA in body fluids increases with the progression of diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer's, generating hope that these short RNA may hold the key to faster, more accurate diagnosis. Currently available techniques for sensitive miRNA detection, however, require days to reach a diagnosis and involve equipment operated only by trained personnel, making them impractical for use in many situations.

The research team set out to overcome these obstacles by developing a device that enables fast, easy-to-use point-of-care (POC) diagnosis from only a very small sample. In earlier research, the team developed a device in the form of a microchip which uses polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), a silicone compound known for its air absorption properties, to pull reagents into a capture probe for analysis. This pumping technique simplified design by eliminating the need for external power sources, but the device required a quantity of sample too large for practical applications.

The new device also uses PDMS as an air pump, but drastically improves the method's sensitivity through a signal amplification method called laminar flow-assisted dendritic amplification (LFDA). First, DNA fragments which bond to specific miRNA sequences are fixed to a glass surface along with the miRNA sample to be analyzed, and then sandwiched under a layer of PDMS with channels in it (Figure 1). Emptied of air in a vacuum, the PDMS layer induces a pump effect which pulls amplification reagents, inserted at the channel inlets, into the channels and into contact with the miRNA, creating fluorescence-labeled dendritic structures that grow over time and can be quickly detected.

The sensitivity of this technique drastically reduces the sample quantity required for diagnosis to only 0.25 attomoles (10-18 mole), a thousand-fold improvement over the team's earlier model. Together with its detection time of only 20 minutes, these properties make the self-powered device ideal for use in resource-poor environments, promising portable point-of-care diagnosis for millions in developing countries and around the world.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,200+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Genetic Variant Linked to Development of Liver Cancer in Hepatitis C Virus Carriers
The research group conduct a genome-wide study to identify risk factors connecting HVC and HCC.
Monday, July 04, 2011
Scientific News
Contagious Cancers Are Spreading in Shellfish
Direct transmission of cancer among some marine animals may be more common than once thought, suggests a new study published in Nature by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).
Contagious Cancers Are Spreading in Shellfish
Direct transmission of cancer among some marine animals may be more common than once thought, suggests a new study published in Nature by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).
Fix for 3-Billion-Year-Old Genetic Error
Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a fix that allows RNA to accurately proofread for the first time.
Revealing the Genetic Causes of Bowel Cancer
A landmark study has given the most detailed picture yet of the genetics of bowel cancer — the UK's fourth most common cancer.
Self-Assembling Protein Shell for Drug Delivery
Made-to-order nano-cages open possibilities of shipping cargo into living cells or fashioning small chemical reactors.
Fighting Resistant Blood Cancer Cells
Biologists present new findings on chronic myeloid leukemia and possible therapeutic approaches.
Tumor Cells Develop Predictable Characteristics
Scientists have discovered that cancer cells at the edge of a tumor that are close to the surrounding environment are predictably different from the cells within the interior of the tumor.
Guided Chemotherapy Missiles
Latching chemotherapy drugs onto proteins that seek out tumors could provide a new way of treating tumors in the brain or with limited blood supply that are hard to reach with traditional chemotherapy.
Solutions for Biotherapeutic Characterization
Innovation to speed the routine.
What Makes a Good Scientist?
It’s the journey, not just the destination that counts as a scientist when conducting research.
SELECTBIO

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,200+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!