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Development of a proof-of-concept microfluidic portable pathogen analysis system for water quality monitoring

Gowda, Hamsa N. and Kido, Horacio and Wu, Xunyi and Shoval, Oren and Lee, Adrienne and Lorenzana, Albert and Madou, Marc and Hoffmann, Michael and Jiang, Sunny C. (2022) Development of a proof-of-concept microfluidic portable pathogen analysis system for water quality monitoring. Science of the Total Environment, 813 . Art. No. 152556. ISSN 0048-9697. PMCID PMC8837627. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2021.152556.

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Waterborne diseases cause millions of deaths worldwide, especially in developing communities. The monitoring and rapid detection of microbial pathogens in water is critical for public health protection. This study reports the development of a proof-of-concept portable pathogen analysis system (PPAS) that can detect bacteria in water with the potential application in a point-of-sample collection setting. A centrifugal microfluidic platform is adopted to integrate bacterial cell lysis in water samples, nucleic acid extraction, and reagent mixing with a droplet digital loop mediated isothermal amplification assay for bacteria quantification onto a single centrifugal disc (CD). Coupled with a portable “CD Driver” capable of automating the assay steps, the CD functions as a single step bacterial detection “lab” without the need to transfer samples from vial-to-vial as in a traditional laboratory. The prototype system can detect Enterococcus faecalis, a common fecal indicator bacterium, in water samples with a single touch of a start button within 1 h and having total hands-on-time being less than 5 min. An add-on bacterial concentration cup prefilled with absorbent polymer beads was designed to integrate with the pathogen CD to improve the downstream quantification sensitivity. All reagents and amplified products are contained within the single-use disc, reducing the opportunity of cross contamination of other samples by the amplification products. This proof-of-concept PPAS lays the foundation for field testing devices in areas needing more accessible water quality monitoring tools and are at higher risk for being exposed to contaminated waters.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Wu, Xunyi0000-0001-9710-6896
Madou, Marc0000-0003-4847-3117
Hoffmann, Michael0000-0001-6495-1946
Jiang, Sunny C.0000-0002-4993-8038
Additional Information:© 2021 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license ( Received 23 August 2021, Revised 15 December 2021, Accepted 16 December 2021, Available online 21 December 2021. This word was supported by provided by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation [OPP1111252], U.S. Bureau of Reclamation [R21AC10079], and National Institutes of Health (NIH) [UL1 TR001414]. We would also like to acknowledge Eric Huang and Yanzhe Zhu from California Institute of Technology for their contributions in the initial CD development. Credit author statement: Hamsa N. Gowda: Conceptualization; development and fabrication of CD; analysis; writing original draft; review & editing. Horacio Kido: Conceptualization; fabrication of CD driver. Xunyi Wu: Development of concentration beads. Oren Shoval: Design of pathogen concentration cup. Adrienne Lee: Optimization of automated droplet detection. Albert Lorenzana: Optimization of automated droplet detection. Marc Madou: Conceptualization of CD design. Michael Hoffmann: Conceptualization and fund acquisition. Sunny C. Jiang: Conceptualization, supervision, fund acquisition, writing of original draft, review and editing. The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Bill and Melinda Gates FoundationOPP1111252
U.S. Bureau of ReclamationR21AC10079
NIHUL1 TR001414
Subject Keywords:Centrifugal microfluidics; Droplet generation; Pathogen; ddLAMP; Bacterial concentration; Point-of-sample collection
PubMed Central ID:PMC8837627
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211221-473346000
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Hamsa N. Gowda, Horacio Kido, Xunyi Wu, Oren Shoval, Adrienne Lee, Albert Lorenzana, Marc Madou, Michael Hoffmann, Sunny C. Jiang, Development of a proof-of-concept microfluidic portable pathogen analysis system for water quality monitoring, Science of The Total Environment, Volume 813, 2022, 152556, ISSN 0048-9697,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:112612
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:21 Dec 2021 20:58
Last Modified:23 Mar 2022 16:52

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