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Fabrication and Characterization of Key Components of a Microfluidic System for Fast SNP Detection in DNA
Keywords: SNP detection, lab on chip, micro PCR
A Lab-on-Chip (LoC) system is proposed, capable of SNP (Single Nucleotide Polymorphism) detection in DNA. The working principle of this LoC system will be explained, as well as the fabrication and characterization of several main components (pumps, filter, microreactor). The system comprises micropumps, microvalves, mixers, microreactors, filters and detectors. Mixers, microreactors and filters are fabricated simultaneously using adjusted clean room processes on Si wafers; followed by anodic bonding of a Pyrex wafer to seal the components. The pumps, valves and detectors are fabricated using various laboratory technologies, followed by integration on the Si chip. The conductive polymer based micropumps are newly designed to enable very high pressure generation, essential to run the fluidics system. Electrochemically deposited polypyrole (PPy) doped with Bis (trifluoromethlsufgony) imdie(TFSI) films are alternating with electrolyte layers, resulting in a powerful actuator generating a large strain (13%) while operating at only ~1.5 V, hence the pump is battery operative. The micro-pump with actuator can generate a pressure as high as 10-20MPa. Other important experimental characterization will be presented. A key component in the LoC system is an advanced filter for separation of DNA segments with different length. As will be explained, certain fabrication parameters (i.e. etch/strip gases) affect the surface properties of the micropillars, hence influencing strongly the filter performance. Microreactors are cavities in the Si wafer, having a volume of several uL and used for performing PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction for DNA amplification). Reliable 3-steps temperature cycling from ~ 50C over 90C to 70C is essential for PCR. The temperature is controlled by an external system. Minimization of the thermal time constant of the microreactor for fast PCR will be discussed, as well as results on the effectiveness of this PCR system using Human Genomic DNA will be described.
Paolo Fiorini, Dr.
Leuven 3001,

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