MinoTech Engineering -  Technology Transfer & Commercial Development

MicroFluidic BioChips

Fiber Optic Interrogated MicroArrays

Fiber Optic Interrogated (FOI) Microwells provide a platform for a variety of high density, reproducible and accurate biochip sensors. Reactions taking place inside etched wells at the ends of an array of optical fibers can be followed using a variety of chemical encoding techniques which are monitored by coupling the optical array to a CCD detection system.

These sensors combine the ‘massively parallel’ analysis achieved with millions of microwells, with speed achieved because of the very low sample volumes required, with the sensitivity of optical detection. In addition to applications in health related biotechnology, this platform will provide a basis for early detection of threats posed by bioterrorism. Innovative new products for environmental testing, such as the ‘chemical nose’ will be enabled by this platform.

FOI Microwell Plates offer a number of unique advantages as a platform for bio-analysis, compared to other techniques:

  • Highest Density - The physical barrier provided by wells allows much higher sample density compared to alternative microarray techniques (ink jet, others) that depend on surface chemistry alone to separate one microdot from another.
  • Direct Optical Interrogation - The high numerical aperture (NA) designed into the fiber optic core provides direct optical linkage to the reaction wells, which can then be interrogated by a variety of sensors, such as a CCD
  • No Cross Talk - Use of EMA fibers eliminates optical cross talk from well to well.
  • Shortest Assay Times - When used in conjunction with microspheres, and by coupling the fiber optic array to a CCD detection system, the shortest assay time compared to other high-density analysis techniques have been demonstrated

FOI Microwell Plates can be custom fabricated to meet the requirements of a number of different applications. Proprietary manufacturing technique makes it possible to specify and carefully control well diameter, well depths, spacing and layout. A variety of different configurations have been developed to meet various diagnostic requirements:

  • Bacteria microscope slides: with 4µ diameter wells, 4µ deep.
  • Mammalian Cell microscope slides: with 21µ diameter wells, 10µ deep.
  • Genomic & Proteomic Analysis: with 42µ diameter wells, 50µ deep.
  • 100µ (or larger) Diameter Wells: produced to your specifications suitable for cell growth or crystal growth applications.
  • All standard sizes: 1”X3” (microscope slide), 2”X3” (double slide), 3 ?” x 5” (micro-titer plate), or custom to meet you requirements.

In addition, these all glass biochips can be surface treated to enhance coupling.

  • Custom Surface Treatments & Coatings
  • Super clean, optically flat
  • Passivating surface – SiO2
  • Amine DNA coupling layer
  • Epoxy DNA Coupling layer
  • Epoxy Protein coupling layer

Working in conjunction with our clients, MinoTech Engineering is developing a biochip platform for Massive Scale Genomic and Proteomic Analysis. Successes include:

  • Developed new micro-fluid slide fabrication process that enhances product quality at significantly lower costs, for a genome-scale analysis instrumentation application.
  • Reduced loss caused by a defect that was acting as a barrier to commercialization from 15.5% to 2.8%.
  • Implemented Companies first Vendor Quality Manual and Product Specifications. Took corrective action to restore vendor relations to a first rate basis.

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