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Capillary Concentration Device Executive Summary

Capillary Concentration Device Executive Summary

Name: Capillary Concentration Device
Elevator Pitch: Device that rapidly detects and identifies select bacterial agents and quickly determines their antibiotic resistance profile
Department: Department of Chemistry & Geochemistry, Colorado School of Mines

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Previous research allowed for the successful development of a lateral flow immunoassay (LFI) for rapid bacterial detection and identification that utilized highly species-specific bacteriophage (phage) amplification (PA) coupled to a gold nanoparticle reporter system for an easy-to-use, rugged, handheld device. While these increases in performance are encouraging, conventional LFI designs suffer from a fundamental limitation—they rely on the use of a detection membrane.

During recent work, the research team identified several important drawbacks encountered with membrane-based LFI that significantly reduce their usefulness in next generation systems aimed at greater sensitivity and faster testing time. These problems range from weak detection levels due to membrane-induced aggregation of reporter conjugates, generation of false positives due to membrane interference with detection antibodies, and false negatives or reduced sensitivity due to poor analyte transport capacity and membrane blocking procedures.

To overcome such difficulties, the team developed a novel lateral flow capillary concentration (LFCC) system. The combination of capillary-based analyte transport with the use of secondary, anti-phage antibody-coated ferrimagnetic and spectroscopic detection using surface enhanced Raman-active (SERS) nanoparticles, allows for focused magnetic analyte concentration and highly sensitive, quantifiable Raman detection within the capillary without the need for the extensive trial and error required with optimization of membrane-based systems. Because this allows much more of a given analyte to be concentrated at the detection zone compared to a membrane, and because the analyte is complexed with Raman nanoparticles, overall device sensitivity is significantly increased.

Technology Benefits
•Theoretical bacterial detection capability of less than 10 cells/mL.
•Commercial applications in numerous large markets including rapid bacterial detection and identification
•Technology can be applied to any analyte for which an antibody can be made.

Medical device, diagnostics, bacteria detection, chromatography, immunoassay

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