Microfluidics is a growing field of research that pertains to the manipulation of fluids on the microscale level, and it is identified most commonly by devices with critical dimensions of less than 1 mm. These devices offer novel and versatile approaches for addressing a range of scientific problems. Conceptually, the idea of microfluidics is that fluids can be precisely manipulated using a microscale device built with technologies first developed by the semiconductor industry and later expanded by the micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) field.
At this scale, researchers can take advantage of the scaling of many physical laws and employ, for example, rapid diffusion, laminar flows, Dean flow, rapid thermal transport, and take advantage of the large surface area relative to the volume. These microfluidics chips hold great promise as it provides various benefits, including but not limited to:
Microfluidic tools, combined with advanced molecular, imaging, and bioinformatics techniques, constitute a flexible ‘toolbox’ that life scientists are actively adopting and adapting.
In recent decades, microfluidic chips have been widely investigated in medical, biological, and chemical areas. Based on this, microfluidic systems are having promising prospect, including diagnostics, prevention, and therapeutic monitoring, biology research, biomedical sensing, environmental monitoring, and food safety detecting, diagnostic applications.
The recent developments in microfluidics have helped researchers working in industries and educational institutes to adopt some of these platforms for point-of-care (POC) diagnostics. It is predicted that combining biosensors with microfluidic chips will yield enhanced analytical capability and widen the possibilities for applications in clinical diagnostics. In addition, these chips may also support the emergence of personalized medicine in which treatments are tailored to the genetic profile of patients and/or to their specific metabolism of drugs.
Some analytical applications of microfluidic systems in the production and use of biopharmaceuticals seem straightforward, for example, analytical systems to monitor and optimize the production of protein drugs such as therapeutic antibodies and high-resolution optimization of drug efficacy over a near-continuum of drug concentrations. In key issues of drug discovery, such as chemical synthesis, screening of compounds, and preclinical testing of drugs on living cells, microfluidic tools can meet the demands for high throughput and can improve or might eventually replace existing technologies. Moreover, these devices might offer an accurate and convenient method for monitoring drug efficacy, drug metabolism, and drug interactions in the plasma of patients.
Life science research is a large and increasing market for microfluidics. The development of new microfluidic tools for genomics, proteomics, and metabolomics is proceeding rapidly in research laboratories and will provide a stimulus for large-scale production. Microfluidics allows researchers to deconstruct complex biological relationships by representing biology in tailored microenvironmental contexts, which can be perturbed in a controlled manner and closely monitored using, for example, real-time high-resolution imaging.
Fig.1 Trapping cells for large-scale single-cell analysis. (Dittrich, 2016)
It is foreseeable that microfluidic chip technology will be further developed to promote perfect on-site and real-time technology, which will greatly benefit life and health science, biomedicine, and others. The integrated, automated microfluidic is bound to become a very important technology.
Microfluidics has the potential to influence subject areas from chemical synthesis and biological analysis to optics and information technology. Creative Biolabs is your dependable service provider combining our state-of-the-art platform together with the knowledge and experience of our experts. We provide one-stop microfluidic solutions and can help you develop and ultimately provide custom services based on specific client needs. Please contact us for more detailed information. We look forward to discussing your inquiry and finding the best solution for your needs!
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