Chipcare, a biotech company specializing in multiplexed Point-of-Care (POC) diagnostics for sexually transmitted infections, approached Gener8 to develop a turnkey sample-to-answer POC device and microfluidic-based cartridge for analyzing blood from HIV patients. The goal was to create a diagnostic device that would allow healthcare providers to perform rapid tests and provide earlier therapy. However, developing a consumable cartridge and an instrument that would work together seamlessly presented significant challenges.
With any project consisting of a consumable and an instrument, it’s essential to align the design and development of each in order to deliver a functional and cost-effective product that meets the client’s requirements.
Gener8 fulfilled Chipcare’s demand for a user-friendly and entirely integrated instrument and consumable for their POC applications. We demonstrated the functionality of all cartridge interfaces, including high-speed thermocycling with less than 3 degrees Celsius per second heating and cooling at the sample, and successful optical detection and imaging in a submillimeter imaging channel within the consumable cartridge. We carried out assay development using the prototype and alpha platforms, which were developed in close collaboration with Chipcare. The necessary sensitivity required for precise detection was obtained due to the low dead volume and tight manufacturing tolerances necessary for the assay.