Abstract by Mukul Sonker
Adam T. Woolley
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Electrokinetically Operated Integrated Microfluidic Platform for Immunoaffinity Extraction and Electrophoresis of Preterm Birth Biomarkers
Preterm Birth (PTB), a birth prior to 37 weeks of pregnancy, affects more than 500,000 children every year in the United States. It is also the most common complication in pregnancy and is the leading cause of neonatal deaths and newborn illnesses. There is a significant need for a rapid and inexpensive diagnosis method which can predict PTBs at a stage where therapeutic interventions are still possible. Recently, a biomarker panel was characterized which can predict a PTB with 87% sensitivity and 81% specificity. Our aim is to develop an electrokinetically operated integrated microfluidic device that can analyze these biomarkers and provide an early diagnosis of PTBs. As a part of this device, we have developed affinity monoliths with immobilized antibodies to specifically capture and selectively elute PTB biomarkers directly from blood/serum samples. Using these devices we have demonstrated immunoaffinity extraction of ferritin, a PTB biomarker, from solutions with low nM concentration. We are also integrating this approach with microchip electrophoresis to simultaneously capture, preconcentrate, selectively elute and separate multiple PTB biomarkers.