Automated Optofluidic Microscope For Cellular Diagnostics
Project Description :

The central theme of the proposed innovation is to offer a holistic and fully automated point-of-care diagnostic solution, which would substantially augment to india’s ailing health care system. in order to compensate for the lack of skilled labor, the instrument has been designed to function in an automated manner. the innovation brings together advances from optics, microfluidics and image processing to enable affordable point-of-care diagnostic testing. the developed instrument employs a portable microfluidic microscopy based approach for automation of quantitative cytological analysis. the instrument has been developed using inexpensive optical, electronic and microfluidic components. the instrument essentially employs a portable bright-field microscope system to image fast flowing cells through a custom designed microfluidic chip. at the start of the test, the sample (fluid) is loaded into the instrument. it is initially loaded into the reagent chamber, where it is mixed the required reagents for sample preparation. following which, the prepared sample flows through a microfluidic device. the network of microfluidic channels is designed so as to enable high fidelity imaging (good focus) of cells passing through them. the optics of portable microscopy system has been designed to align the microfluidic channel within the depth of focus of the imaging system. the images of cells passing through the microfluidic channel are acquired using a digital image sensor in a serial fashion. thereby, eliminating the laborious task of scanning a slide, onto which cells are fixed. the acquired images of cells are then processed using custom-developed image processing algorithms to assess cellular morphology, extract different features like cell size, shape, presence/absence of pathogen etc. based on the morphological characteristics the cells are automatically classified into different types. for example, in the case of malaria, the instrument has been shown to enable counting of infected and healthy cells and thereby enable automated quantitative estimation of parasitemia. after the acquired images are processed, the results along with the processed/classified images are sent to a trained professional (doctor). based on the results, the doctor would arrive at a diagnostic conclusion. as the instrument is based on microscopy, it can be easily extended for use in diagnosis of most other diseases as well. further, the instrument is designed as dedicated optical reader (portable microscope), which functions along with replaceable microfluidic lab-on-chip devices. for each test, the only incurred is for that of the microfluidic chip. also, with the use of microfludics the sample volume and thereby reagent volumes are significantly reduced. thereby lowering the cost-per-test as well. the instrument employs syringe-suction based pumping mechanism, which enables sample flow without the need for electrical power. this enables operation in remote settings with power shortage as well. hence, the developed instrument would potentially have low setup costs as well as low running costs (costs-per-test). we believe that the instrument would significantly help alleviate the problems of india's rural and urban health-care system.

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Project Details :
  • Date : Jan 07,2016
  • Innovator : Veerendra Kalyan Jagannadh
  • Team Members : Jayesh V. Adhikari, Albina L. Nirupa, Rashmi S, Bindu Bhat
  • Guide Name : Dr. Sai Siva Gorthi
  • College : Indian Institute of Science
  • Submission Year : 2016
  • Category : Medical Science & Technology
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