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Controlled, synchronized actuation of microdroplets by gravity in a superhydrophobic, 3D-printed device

Oomen, P. E., Mulder, J. P. S. H., Verpoorte, E. & Oleschuk, R. D. 2-Oct-2017 In : Analytica Chimica Acta. 988, p. 50-57 8 p.

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  • Controlled, synchronized actuation of microdroplets by gravity

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DOI

Droplet manipulation over open surfaces allows one to perform assays with a large degree of control and high throughput, making them appealing for applications in drug screening or (bio)analysis. However, the design, manufacturing and operation of these systems comes with high technical requirements. In this study we employ a commercial, low-friction, superhydrophobic coating, Ultra-Ever Dry (R), on a 3D-printed microfluidic device. The device features individual droplet compartments, which allow the manipulation of discrete droplets (10-50 mu L) actuated by gravity alone. Simply by angling the device to normal in a 3D-printed holder and rocking in a "to and fro"-fashion, a sequence of droplets can be individually transferred to an electrochemical microelectrode detector and then to waste, while preserving the (chronological) order of samples. Multiple biological fluids (i.e. human saliva, urine and rat blood and serum) were successfully tested for compatibility with the device and actuation mechanism, demonstrating low slip angles and high contact angles. Biological matrix (protein) carryover was probed and effectively mitigated by incorporating aqueous rinse droplets as part of the analysis sequence. As a proof-of-concept, the enzyme-coupled, amperometric detection of glucose was carried out on individual rat serum droplets, enabling total analysis in approximate to 30 min, including calibration. The device is readily customizable, and the integration of droplet generation techniques and other sensor systems for different analytes of interest or applications can be realized in a plug and play fashion. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)50-57
Number of pages8
JournalAnalytica Chimica Acta
Volume988
StatePublished - 2-Oct-2017

    Keywords

  • Superhydrophobicity, Droplets, 3D printing, Gravity actuation, ON-A-CHIP, DROPLET MICROFLUIDICS, DIGITAL MICROFLUIDICS, MASS-SPECTROMETRY, HIGH-THROUGHPUT, PLATFORM, BIOSENSORS, SURFACES, BLOOD

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