An integrated microfluidic system for rapid, automatic and high-throughput staining of clinical tissue samples for diagnosis of ovarian cancer†
Accurate cancer diagnostic methods are of urgent need. Since traditional immunohistochemistry (IHC)-based approaches, while reliable, are labor-intensive and require well-trained technicians, we developed an integrated microfluidic platform capable of labeling ovarian cancer biomarkers (i.e. aptamer) within formalin-fixed, paraffin embedded tissues via molecular probes. Both aptamer-based 1) fluorescent staining and 2) IHC staining of clinical tissue samples could be automated in the microfluidic system in only 2–3 h (40–50% faster than conventional approaches) with <0.5 mL of reagents, signifying that this device could serve as a promising diagnostic tool for ovarian cancer.