Date of Award

6-2012

Degree Name

MS in Biomedical Engineering

Department

Biomedical and General Engineering

Advisor

Dr. David Clague

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis project was to demonstrate the ability to utilize the capabilities of aptamers so that they may act as capture reagents for paper microfluidic devices. Several characterization experiments were conducted as a precursor before the final experimentation was performed. Paper characterization, manufacturing protocols for printing and heating, as well as 3D chip fabrication were all performed and analyzed. The results confirmed that the control of fluid through a 3D microfluidic device based in nitrocellulose is possible.

For the biochemistry portion of this thesis report, antibodies and aptamers were chosen to react with IgE, an antibody that is present in high concentrations in the urine of patients diagnosed with respiratory distress. Antibody chips were successfully created as a baseline lateral flow assay for comparison to new aptamer detector reagents. The aptamer experiments were able to demonstrate that it is possible to utilize the capabilities of aptamers so that they may behave as capture reagents in paper microfluidic devices. Overall, the experiments performed were extremely supportive of the ability to develop the field of paper microfluidics with the use of aptamers so that patient populations across the globe can be more accurately and effectively diagnosed.

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