A Capillary Flow Dynamics-Based Sensing Modality for Direct Environmental Pathogen Monitoring

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22 Scopus citations


Toward ultra-simple and field-ready biosensors, we demonstrate a novel assay transducer mechanism based on interfacial property changes and capillary flow dynamics in antibody-conjugated submicron particle suspensions. Differential capillary flow is tunable, allowing pathogen quantification as a function of flow rate through a paper-based microfluidic device. Flow models based on interfacial and rheological properties indicate a significant relationship between the flow rate and the interfacial effects caused by target-particle aggregation. This mechanism is demonstrated for assays of Escherichia coli K12 in water samples and Zika virus (ZIKV) in blood serum. These assays achieved very low limits of detection compared with other demonstrated methods (1 log CFU/mL E. coli and 20 pg/mL ZIKV whole virus) with an operating time of 30 s, showing promise for environmental and health monitoring.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6025-6029
Number of pages5
JournalChemistry - A European Journal
Issue number23
StatePublished - Apr 20 2018


  • aggregation
  • biosensors
  • capillary
  • microfluidic device
  • pathogens

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Catalysis
  • Organic Chemistry


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