Date of Award


Degree Name

MS in Biomedical Engineering


Biomedical and General Engineering


David Clague


The purpose of this thesis project is to demonstrate and evaluate an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) on a paper microfluidic device platform. The integration of ELISA technology onto paper microfluidic chips allows for a quantitative detection of stroke biomarkers, such as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). Dye experiments were performed to confirm fluid connectivity throughout the 3D chips. Several chip and housing designs were fabricated to determine an optimal design for the microfluidic device. Once this design was finalized, development time testing was performed. The results confirmed that the paper microfluidic device could successfully route fluid throughout its channels at a reasonable rate.

For the biochemistry portion of this thesis project, antibodies were selected to target the intended stroke biomarker: GFAP. However, due to antibody pairing complications, the protein chosen for this project was natural human cardiac troponin T, which is elevated in the bloodstream of patients who have suffered a stroke. Several antibody experiments were performed to help finalize the procedure for performing an ELISA on the paper chip. The final antibody experiment was able to demonstrate that a paper microfluidic device utilizing ELISA techniques can successfully detect a stroke biomarker at physiologically relevant concentrations. Overall, this project supported the ability to accurately and effectively diagnose stroke in a timely manner through the use of a paper microfluidic device.