A hybrid paper and microfluidic chip with electrowetting valves and colorimetric detection
Sequential fluid delivery with minimized external equipment is vital towards a point-of-care diagnostic device. In this work, we have further developed the On-chip Electrowetting Valves concept for the sequential delivery of the reagents to the reaction site in a miniaturized capillary-driven microfluidic chip. Specifically, a disposable polymeric microfluidic device was developed containing capillary force driven microchannels. The device was fabricated using laser ablation and inkjet printing and required no external pumping equipment. The assay was conducted on the microchip containing microfluidic channels with embedded electrowetting valves and a porous membrane patterned with capture molecules and colloidal gold labels. To conduct the assay, the microchip was connected with a low voltage supply which was capable of sequentially opening the valves, delivering the sample and the rinsing reagent to generate visual results. Using T7 bacteriophage as a model, we have demonstrated the development of the device, operation of the valves and execution of the automated assay.