Laboratory researchers are reliant on microfluidic and microscopic systems to preserve, implement, and construct optical techniques. However, it can become a challenge to do so without the appropriate advancement in optical technology and its use.
Biology is founded on the principles of growth, development, and a thirst for knowledge. With advanced optical techniques and systems, it becomes possible for the integration of technology and biology to initiate success.
The world of drug discovery and pharmaceutical research has remained steadfast with its eye towards high margin application. This is seen with commercial microfluidic systems and how they are perceived and used.
A “mainframe” is designed to assist in how these systems are controlled. Without the right output, the commercial microfluidic systems lose their edge and viability.as a resource. With the use of disposable microfluidic cartridge-based systems, the mainframe acts as an important gateway towards a researcher’s desired results.
If a researcher were to sit down and pinpoint hurdles present in the world of commercial microfluidic systems, they would point towards expenses, complexity, and general limitations in optics. How can this be corrected? With the advancement in technology and its implementation, these hurdles begin to fade away.
Whether it is biological measurements or general microintegrated optics, the goal remains to provide meaningful value in a reduced form. Researchers are often faced with the challenge of restricted space and continuous complications with macroscale optics. This changes with the implementation of a “lab-on-a-chip” setup where the control is handed back to the researcher.
It reduces the chances of errors being made or inaccuracies development in how the optics are unravelled and presented in research studies.
These nuances are what ensure the importance of integration remains significant as time goes on. The right hardware can have a substantial impact in the short and long-run.
MOABC is a center that is focused around the integration of optics into microfluidic and microscale systems. The need for these techniques is on the increase associated with the molecular and cellular biosensors. For these reasons there are now analytical platforms that are available for portable applications.
In order to implement current technologies like fluorescence detection into these applications necessitates the need for detection, excitation and imaging abilities for the microscale platforms. The use of this integrated optics forms the answer to reaching the goal for phenomenal cost and size reductions on biomedical devices and meeting up with the needs of the biotechnology researchers that involve new manipulation and assays techniques.
The MOABC center is aimed at servicing a wide variety of research communities that include commercialization and investigation ventures. The expertise and the products of this center will assist with the consumers for medical care as well as reach to various technologies in the Third World.
Characterization Of The Technology Areas:
•Will include integrated microscale “biophotonic measurement systems” used to characterize cells.
•Includes Femtosecond Laser Micromachining used for precision with 3D integrated microfluidic and optical devices.
•Makes use of optical-based methods to control cells along with label-free sensing for the properties of the cells.
The research conducted in MOABC is structured around three cores of research. These include the following:
This research revolves around the single as well as multimodal measurement-systems that integrate microscale and optical systems used to characterize cells along with other types of biologically important molecules.
This research is aimed at integrating and implementing multidimensional characterization methods using hardware that is readily available to the researchers.
This core involves controlling of cells using optical-based techniques and label-free sensing related to the cells-mechanical properties.
Optics have been used for centuries in the field of biology. Today, there is still a significant need for making what is old new again in terms of technology so as to advance various industries. MOABC is a world-class optical science laboratory headquartered in Colorado and its focus is on doing just this.
The center focuses on integrating optics in microscale and microfluidic applications and systems. The need for biosensors and analytical platforms are fast being developed for portable applications, making the need for advanced bioimaging more important than ever.
MOABC offers unique facilities that have the capabilities to help serve the community at large with these advances in research. There are three state-of-the-art chirped pulse amplification systems on site together will a large array of laser oscillators to help with imaging and spectroscopy.
MOABC is on the forefront of developing niche applications for the pharmaceutical industry and aids in the discovery of new drugs. In order to create platforms that will impact greater markets inside and outside the laboratory, the hardware used is constantly being made smaller and more adaptive to microscale platforms.
The long-term focus is on continuing to reduce optic electronics so as to make a miniature optical chip-lab. This is done within three separate research cores including spectroscopy, microscopy, and manipulation.
In spectroscopy, single and multi-modal measurement systems integrate the optical and micro-scale systems. These help to characterize cells and molecules. Microscopy implements and integrates multi-dimensional techniques with hardware manipulated by the researchers. Manipulation makes use of the control of cells and their mechanical properties with optical-based tools.
The center’s capabilities are the result of the funding from several grant sponsors. These sponsors include the National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.
Optical techniques have been in use for centuries in association to biology. There is a definite need to ensure these techniques become more portable as well as accessible along with making the newer techniques readily available for the laboratory researchers. The company MOABC is aimed towards integrating optic technology for microfluidic and microscopic systems. This is a requirement that is supported by capabilities and unique facilities that they serve. This forms the foundation of an extremely beneficial community resource.
MOABC can be found in the GRL (General Research Laboratories) based at the Colorado School of Mines campus. The Mines are positioned in Golden Colorado. The research center is in close proximity to the metropolitan area as well as Denver International Airport which offers ready access to the facility. The area of Golden enjoys more than 300 days of wonderful sunshine each year.
The Capabilities Center
MOABC’s capabilities center involves an ultrafast and world renowned science laboratory that features 3 high-intensity and superior chirped-pulse amplification systems along with a wide array of the femtosecond laser oscillators that are used for spectroscopy and imaging. These femtosecond optical abilities necessitate a significant infrastructure that is typically not available at a variety of other institutions. The sources available are able to control and generate electromagnetic radiation that spans from x-ray regimes to the millimeter waves.
The Senior Personnel At MOABC
A professor who works in the Chemical Engineering Department
A Professor who works in the Physics Department
An Assistant as well as Adjoint Professor who works in the Department Of Chemistry And Biochemistry and the University Of Colorado at Boulder as well as at the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Assistant professor based at the Colorado School of Mines works in the Chemical Engineering Department
Is an Associate Professor who work in the Physics Department
Optical techniques are used in biology for more than hundred years. Today, there is a significant need to make these tried and tested methods more and more accessible to laboratory researchers. This is where MOABC comes into the picture. They are fully focused on integrating optical technology with microfluidic and microscopic systems. This article provides an overview of micro integrated optics for advanced control and bioimaging.
Commercial microfluidic systems have been in the development process for the past decade or so. These systems are aimed at the high margin application industries such as drug recovery and pharmaceutical research. Most of these systems are basically microfluidic cartridge-based systems that are disposable. But they still need a larger interface. In fact, there are reliability, cost, and complexity limitations associated with these optics, electronics components, and fluidics within the mainframe. The hardware needs to be miniaturized as well as simplified for diagnostic and research platforms to have an effect on broader markets and become available inside and outside the laboratories. In fact, the functions that are performed by peripheral hardware have to be directly integrated into the microscale platform.
The long-term goal of the organization is to reduce electronics and macro scale optics to an optical-lab-on-a-chip which is in agreement with the fluidics lab-on-a-chip paradigm. This will be done by developing novel methods of biological manipulation and measurements based on micro integrated optics.
In conclusion, the MOABC Center deals with integrating optics into microfluidic and microscale systems. This need has been significantly felt with the many analytical platforms being developed for portable applications. Using integrated optics is essential to achieving size and cost reduction for biomedical devices. The aforementioned article provides a comprehensive overview of Microintegrated Optics For Advanced Control And Bioimaging. For more information visit – http://www.moabc.org.