Abstract by Annie Armitstead
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Protein Pens: A New Diagnostic Instrument
Lateral Flow Immunoassays (LFI) are simple tests that detect biomarkers. Requiring only a few minutes, small sample sizes and no read-out equipment, LFI’s are an valuable testing technique. Made up of multiple layers, they facilitate the capillary flow of a sample through protein detection zones, yielding visual results.
However, assembly of LFI strips require expensive machines, trained personnel, and expensive materials. A platform designed to be streamlined, low-cost, and intelligible to the unskilled would open the door of medicine to even the most underprivileged clinics in the world.
We are developing a paper LFI that uses copy paper and a protein pen. Results in our new testing technique are comparable to commercialized LFI’s: binding within 1 min, and consistent protein binding at a 1/10^5 concentration. With different protein inks, this platform could detect many diseases and important biomarkers.