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Signal Enhancement Magnetic Trap - Microchip Appratus and Method that Enhances a Microfluidic Detectors Limits

Commonly referred to as "lab-on-a-chip" technology, microfluidic devices are transforming detectors and diagnostics in the environmental, chemical, biological, medical, and pharmaceutical fields. Generally speaking these devices quantify, react, and help to characterize and detect samples dissolved in gases and liquids. What makes these devices unique is that they are on the micro-scale and can analyze extremely small quantities of sample with very high levels of sensitivity. They can dramatically reduce reagent costs, minimize processing times, and provide very high resolution. At this point in the detection and diagnostics industry there is a continuing effort to develop devices with lower limits of detection so that even more minute quantities of a target can be detected successfully.
Patent Abstract: 
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory scientists have developed a signal enhancing microchip apparatus and method that enhances a microfluidic detector's limits by magnetically focusing the target analytes in a zone of optical convergence. In summary, samples are associated with magnetic nanoparticles or magnetic polystyrene coated beads and moved down the flow channels until they are trapped in a magnetic trap-zone.
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