Programmed Adsorption and Release of Proteins in a Microfluidic Device

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Science  18 Jul 2003:
Vol. 301, Issue 5631, pp. 352-354
DOI: 10.1126/science.1080759

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A microfluidic device has been developed that can adsorb proteins from solution, hold them with negligible denaturation, and release them on command. The active element in the device is a 4-nanometer-thick polymer film that can be thermally switched between an antifouling hydrophilic state and a protein-adsorbing state that is more hydrophobic. This active polymer has been integrated into a microfluidic hot plate that can be programmed to adsorb and desorb protein monolayers in less than 1 second. The rapid response characteristics of the device can be manipulated for proteomic functions, including preconcentration and separation of soluble proteins on an integrated fluidics chip.

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