Remotely-controlled robotic air and ground vehicles (frequently collectively called drones) play a rapidly increasing role not only in military operations but for many civilian tasks ranging from traffic surveillance to disaster monitoring. The possibility to do remote sampling in areas otherwise difficult to reach as well as their low acquisition and operating cost compared to other technical solutions make them attractive platforms for chemical and biological analysis systems. The restrictions on size and weight on these platforms together with the need for a rugged system layout makes lab-on-a-chip technologies the prime candidates to be implemented on such a drone platform. We report on a lab-on-a-chip system for such tasks which consist out of a fully integrated lab-on-a-chip cartridge and the respective control hardware. The cartridge contains all reagents in liquid and dry form required to perform a molecular biology assay to identify bacterial pathogens such as Brucella and Francisella. These zoonotic bacteria are classified as biological agents and cause the (re-)emerging diseases brucellosis and tularemia, which occur also in developed countries in a relevant number of human clinical cases. After proof-of-concept for these pathogens, it is planned to expand the platform to further B-agents.
Holger Becker and Richard Klemm, "Lab-on-a-chip analyzer for zoonotic pathogens in remotely-controlled robotic air and ground vehicles (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10491, Microfluidics, BioMEMS, and Medical Microsystems XVI, 104910L (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 28, 2018; Published: 14 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2297105.5751456491001.
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