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Issue 19, 2012
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Frontiers of optofluidics in synthetic biology

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The development of optofluidic-based technology has ushered in a new era of lab-on-a-chip functionality, including miniaturization of biomedical devices, enhanced sensitivity for molecular detection, and multiplexing of optical measurements. While having great potential, optofluidic devices have only begun to be exploited in many biotechnological applications. Here, we highlight the potential of integrating optofluidic devices with synthetic biological systems, which is a field focusing on creating novel cellular systems by engineering synthetic gene and protein networks. First, we review the development of synthetic biology at different length scales, ranging from single-molecule, single-cell, to cellular population. We emphasize light-sensitive synthetic biological systems that would be relevant for the integration with optofluidic devices. Next, we propose several areas for potential applications of optofluidics in synthetic biology. The integration of optofluidics and synthetic biology would have a broad impact on point-of-care diagnostics and biotechnology.

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Publication details

The article was received on 20 Jul 2012, accepted on 06 Aug 2012 and first published on 07 Aug 2012

Article type: Frontier
DOI: 10.1039/C2LC40828G
Citation: Lab Chip, 2012,12, 3654-3665
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    Frontiers of optofluidics in synthetic biology

    C. Tan, S. Lo, P. R. LeDuc and C. Cheng, Lab Chip, 2012, 12, 3654
    DOI: 10.1039/C2LC40828G

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