New technology being developed by scientists in Norway may bring rapid blood testing directly to the bedside. The SpinChip, invented by Stig Morten Borch of Norway’s SINTEF research center, uses a centrifuge to spin a small microfluidic chip that separates a blood sample into solid and liquid components that then undergo chemical reactions within the chip’s narrow channels. Within minutes of activating the centrifuge, an optical sensor reads the results of the reactions and provides output to the clinician.
The technology is continuing to be developed by a newly formed spinoff firm SpinChip Diagnostics AS, which plans to spend the next couple of years getting a viable product ready for commercialization.
While current solutions have only a limited repertoire of analyses and are sometimes unreliable, the SpinChip technology has the potential to perform a wide range of analyses rapidly, simply and reliably. The analytical technology will be available in a portable instrument, so that critical bioanalyses can be moved from the laboratory to hospital emergency departments, bedsides and doctors’ surgeries, making it easier to start the right treatment sooner than would otherwise be possible.
Press release: SpinChip analyses blood samples on the spot