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Issue 21, 2013
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Albumin testing in urine using a smart-phone

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We demonstrate a digital sensing platform, termed Albumin Tester, running on a smart-phone that images and automatically analyses fluorescent assays confined within disposable test tubes for sensitive and specific detection of albumin in urine. This light-weight and compact Albumin Tester attachment, weighing approximately 148 grams, is mechanically installed on the existing camera unit of a smart-phone, where test and control tubes are inserted from the side and are excited by a battery powered laser diode. This excitation beam, after probing the sample of interest located within the test tube, interacts with the control tube, and the resulting fluorescent emission is collected perpendicular to the direction of the excitation, where the cellphone camera captures the images of the fluorescent tubes through the use of an external plastic lens that is inserted between the sample and the camera lens. The acquired fluorescent images of the sample and control tubes are digitally processed within one second through an Android application running on the same cellphone for quantification of albumin concentration in the urine specimen of interest. Using a simple sample preparation approach which takes ∼5 min per test (including the incubation time), we experimentally confirmed the detection limit of our sensing platform as 5–10 μg mL−1 (which is more than 3 times lower than the clinically accepted normal range) in buffer as well as urine samples. This automated albumin testing tool running on a smart-phone could be useful for early diagnosis of kidney disease or for monitoring of chronic patients, especially those suffering from diabetes, hypertension, and/or cardiovascular diseases.

Graphical abstract: Albumin testing in urine using a smart-phone

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Publication details

The article was received on 30 Jun 2013, accepted on 09 Aug 2013 and first published on 09 Aug 2013

Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C3LC50785H
Lab Chip, 2013,13, 4231-4238

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    Albumin testing in urine using a smart-phone

    A. F. Coskun, R. Nagi, K. Sadeghi, S. Phillips and A. Ozcan, Lab Chip, 2013, 13, 4231
    DOI: 10.1039/C3LC50785H

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