Date of Award



Biomedical and General Engineering


David Clague


This thesis successfully integrates laminate microfluidic devices with an analytic Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) instrument. Integration was accomplished at low-cost using materials such as polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS), Poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), Tygon tubing, and a 3-way stopcock. The main components of this thesis are the design and fabrication of the low-cost, in-house fluidics that can integrate with upstream microfluidics and the validation of the in-house fluidics using the Biosensing Instruments BI-2000 SPR instrument. The low-cost fluidics was designed and fabricated “in-house” using a novel investment casting technique that required the use of laser cutting technology to make a master cast, and candle wax to make the fluidic flow gasket.

Integration of upstream microfluidic devices is the next step towards fully integrated point-of-care (POC) diagnostics. Development of low-cost POC diagnostics will enable physicians to diagnosis patients outside of clinical settings, granting treatment access to a much wider population. Surface Plasmon Resonance is used for its detection abilities combined with its ability to perform real-time sample analysis.

Validation of the in-house fluidics was accomplished by conducting (2) experiments: (1) to compare the angular shift elicited by ethanol solutions between in-house fluidics, factory fluidics, and the literature, and (2) to compare the angular shift between in-house fluidics and factory fluidics caused by the cleaving of fibroblasts from the SPR sensor chip. Successful comparisons made in both experiments proved successful development of low-cost fluidics that could integrate upstream microfluidic devices.