A lab-on-a-chip is a microfluidic basic chip which incorporates one or more laboratory functions on a single chip.
Lab-on-a-Chip and BioMEMS – on the basis of microfluidics – provide a revolutionary potential which is accepted in the scientific research and industrial process control.
The Advantages of Lab-on-a-Chip Systems
Special applications of lab-on-a-chip systems (LOC systems) are in the field of medical diagnostics, here particularly in the area of individual medicine and the point-of-care resp. point-of-need diagnostics. LOC systems are used in the industry, in the laboratory analytics as well as direct in the fiesld of patient care.
Diagnostic results are achieved much faster with LOC systems than using standard diagnostic procedures. LOC systems thus revolutionise the availability of diagnostic test results in the health care. They are ideal for the efficient and fast diagnostics and therapy close to the patient. An added advantage of these chips: For reliable and sensitive test results only small volumes of fluids are needed.
Typical Fields of Application
Pharmaceutics & Genetics
Thousands of experiments can be conducted in parallel using LOC systems. This results in a more reliable and faster development of new drugs and an accelerated determination of genes.
LOC allow the optimisation of process parameters and the miniaturization of the deployed micro reactors. More cost intensive steps of adjusting production processes are thus avoided. LOC are especially favoured in the application in high-throughput chromatography.
Medicine and diagnostics
With a LOC system patients can be tested within a short time on different diseases. Thus a therapy can be started at an instant of time, saving valuable time. In due course the progress of the therapy can be monitored precisely and the therapy can be adjusted individually for a patient.
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