Microfluidics and Nanofluidics

, Volume 13, Issue 5, pp 749–760 | Cite as

Bead-based polymerase chain reaction on a microchip

  • John P. Hilton
  • ThaiHuu Nguyen
  • Mihaela Barbu
  • Renjun Pei
  • Milan Stojanovic
  • Qiao Lin
Research Paper


We present a bead-based approach to microfluidic polymerase chain reaction (PCR), enabling fluorescent detection and sample conditioning in a single microchamber. Bead-based PCR, while not extensively investigated in microchip format, has been used in a variety of bioanalytical applications in recent years. We leverage the ability of bead-based PCR to accumulate fluorescent labels following DNA amplification to explore a novel DNA detection scheme on a microchip. The microchip uses an integrated microheater and temperature sensor for rapid control of thermal cycling temperatures, while the sample is held in a microchamber fabricated from (poly)dimethylsiloxane and coated with Parylene. The effects of key bead-based PCR parameters, including annealing temperature and concentration of microbeads in the reaction mixture, are studied to achieve optimized device sensitivity and detection time. The device is capable of detecting a synthetically prepared section of the Bordetella pertussis genome in as few as 10 temperature cycles with times as short as 15 min. We then demonstrate the use of the procedure in an integrated device; capturing, amplifying, detecting, and purifying template DNA in a single microfluidic chamber. These results show that this method is an effective method of DNA detection which is easily integrated in a microfluidic device to perform additional steps such as sample pre-conditioning.


Polymerase chain reaction Bead DNA capture DNA purification Microfluidics 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • John P. Hilton
    • 1
  • ThaiHuu Nguyen
    • 1
  • Mihaela Barbu
    • 2
  • Renjun Pei
    • 2
  • Milan Stojanovic
    • 2
  • Qiao Lin
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Division of Clinical Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Department of MedicineColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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