Motor-assisted chip-in-a-tube (MACT): a new 2- and 3-dimensional centrifugal microfluidic platform for biomedical applications
Currently, centrifuge apparatus is primarily an end-point sample processing piece of equipment. The lack of real-time active control has imposed an inherent limitation such that many delicate sample processing steps requiring immediate and accurate intervention have never been possible. We report herein a motor-assisted chip-in-a-tube (MACT) platform in which a microfluidic chip placed inside a common centrifuge canister can be rotated through wireless control in order to manipulate the centrifugal force vector in a 3-dimensional (3D) manner. As a demonstration experiment, we have used our MACT prototype to perform the operation for two common biomedical procedures, namely human blood plasma separation and E. coli plasmid DNA extraction. This simple, yet highly effective and versatile approach may serve as a generic one-for-all platform for a wide range of common laboratory experiments and bioassay applications.