DNA sequencing is changing the way we look at diseases from flu to cancer. Today's DNA sequencing often relies on manual sample preparation with different instruments operated by well-trained users. This greatly hampers DNA sequencing from being more accurate, fast, and affordable. To allow DNA sequencing to be used in a wider range of applications, such as diagnostics at home, it will be critical to fully automate these steps and integrate the sample prep flow together with sequencing, i.e. sample-to-answer in a single device.
This integrated approach can be achieved with smart precision fluidics, with micro sensors & actuators in silicon, fluidic channels in glass and packaged in plastic, depending on the need for high-precision structures. Think for example of a plastic channel with a silicon PCR chamber.
In this webinar, we will share our in-house expertise on smart precision fluidics. The high-precision possibilities of lithography and microfabrication will be described, as well as specific structures that imec has developed for an integrated sample preparation flow. For example: micro-pillar mediated filters, sieves, extraction devices, pumps and valves, sensors, microscopes, electrical sample prep devices, cell and droplet sorters (for cfDNA, single-cell sequencing and barcoding).
Chengxun Liu is currently a principal member of technical staff in the life science department at imec. As the team leader for precision fluidics, he drives the innovation of silicon and polymer fluidic component & integration for life science applications. Chengxun has a mixed education background of engineering and biology, with the belief that microtechnology enables innovative solutions to life science challenges. His research interest and experience coveres a broad range of biophysics and microfluidic technologies, such as cell isolation, molecular assays, electrokinetics and droplet fluidics. Since Chengxun joined imec he has been leading the development of several technologies such as single-cell electrical impedance spectroscopy, high-speed cell sorting, droplet sorting, electrical cell & biomolecule manipulations, etc.