Nucleic Acid Isolation Cartridge

Obtaining high-quality, intact RNA is the first and often the most critical step in performing many fundamental molecular biology experiments, including northern blot analysis, nuclease protection assays, in vitro translation, reverse transcription PCR, and cDNA library construction. This problem is particularly critical in biodetection systems where it is very common to begin with “dirty” samples. In these and similar applications, a robust sample preparation process is critical to ensuring reliable analytical results.

CFDRC has developed a novel microfluidics based cartridge that fully automates the complex process of nucleic acid (RNA or DNA) isolation. Starting from cells suspended in a liquid medium (for example, harvested mammalian cells in culture medium or bacterial cells in a liquid matrix from aerosol collectors), the cartridge lyses, captures, and isolates nucleic acids in a fully integrated fashion requiring minimal intervention from a laboratory technician. The cartridge harnesses electrokinetics-driven, microbead-based techniques to improve performance efficiencies. In addition to higher yields and faster process times, losses and contamination are minimized as a result of the miniaturization and automation. Potential applications for the technology include drug discovery and development, diagnostics, homeland defense, and healthcare.