In this paper we demonstrate a dark field video imaging system for the detection and size characterization of individual magnetic micromarkers suspended in liquid and the detection of pathogens utilizing magnetically labelled E.coli. The system follows dynamic processes and interactions of moving micro/nano objects close to or below the optical resolution limit, and is especially suitable for small sample volumes (~ 10 μl). The developed detection method can be used to obtain clinical information about liquid contents when an additional biological protocol is provided, i.e., binding of microorganisms (e.g. E.coli) to specific magnetic markers. Some of the major advantages of our method are the increased sizing precision in the micro- and nano-range as well as the setup’s simplicity making it a perfect candidate for miniaturized devices. Measurements can thus be carried out in a quick, inexpensive, and compact manner. A minor limitation is that the concentration range of micromarkers in a liquid sample needs to be adjusted in such a manner that the number of individual particles in the microscope’s field of view is sufficient.
This paper reports on a microfluidic platform with an integrated spin valve giant magneto-resistance (GMR) sensor used for the detection and quantification of single magnetic micromarkers. A microfluidic channel containing the magnetic fluid, microconductors (MCs) for collection of the magnetic markers and a spin valve GMR sensor for detecting the presence of their magnetic stray field were integrated on a single chip. The results show that the sensor is capable of detecting a single magnetic marker with 2.8 μm diameter.
This paper presents the design and realization of a compact, portable and cost effective microfluidic system for isolation and detection of rare circulating tumor cells (CTCs) in suspension. The innovative aspect of the proposed isolation method is that it utilizes superparamagnetic particles (SMPs) to label CTCs and then isolate those using microtraps with integrated current carrying microconductors. The magnetically labeled and trapped CTCs can then be detected by integrated magnetic microsensors e.g. giant magnetoresistive (GMR) or giant magnetoimpedance (GMI) sensors. The channel and trap dimensions are optimized to protect the cells from shear stress and achieve high trapping efficiency. These intact single CTCs can then be used for additional analysis, testing and patient specific drug screening. Being able to analyze the CTCs metastasis-driving capabilities on the single cell level is considered of great importance for developing patient specific therapies. Experiments showed that it is possible to capture single labeled cells in multiple microtraps and hold them there without permanent electric current and magnetic field.
This paper presents a novel microfluidic biosensor for in-vitro detection of biomolecules labeled by magnetic biomarkers (Nanomag-D beads) suspended in a static fluid in combination with giant magnetoresistance (GMR) sensors. While previous studies were focused mainly on exploring the MR change for biosensing of bacteria labeled with magnetic microparticles, we show that our biosensor can be used for the detection of much smaller pathogens in the range of a few hundred nanometers e.g., viruses labeled with Nanomag-D beads (MNPs). For the measurements we also used a novel method for signal acquisition and demodulation. Expensive function generators, data acquisition devices and lock-in amplifiers are substituted by a generic PC sound card and an algorithm combining the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) of the signal with a peak detection routine. This way, costs are drastically reduced, portability is enabled, detection hands-on time is reduced, and sample throughput can be increased using automation and efficient data evaluation with the appropriate software.