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UCLA Bioengineering

Engineering V

410 Westwood Plaza

Los Angeles, CA

Samueli School of Engineering

7400 Boelter Hall

Los Angeles, CA

Website Made by

Mark van Zee

mvanzee2014@ucla.edu

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Quantum Diagnostics

Diagnosing disease at the ultimate limit of single cells and single molecules

The past decade has witnessed measurement at the quantum limits of biology: 1. Single nucleic acids are measured massively in parallel (e.g. with digital PCR), 2. The presence of single proteins can be amplified and measured (e.g. with digital ELISA), and 3. The surge in number of approaches analyzing the content of many single-cells massively in parallel.  The ability to measure single cells and molecules provides valuable information on the heterogeneity of human tissue and the progression of diseases, thus pushing the very limit of diagnostics. Despite the exciting breakthroughs of single entity assays, the adoption of these technologies has been limited due to the requirement of significant new infrastructure and expertise. To address this issue, we are developing simple and robust platforms to create and operate on sub-nanoliter volumes, all with minimal instrumentation. We utilize the unique properties of ferrofluids to create uniform sub-nanoliter droplets and manipulate them with simple motions of magnets instead of complex pumps. Such a platform enables pump-free microfluidics and by using cell-phone readers, we achieved portable readings of digital assays. We also produce lab-on-a-particle systems, which can be optimized to suit desirable applications, such as cell adhesion, nucleic acid or protein binding, as well as encapsulation and segregation of uniformly sized aqueous volumes. We envision a collection of these approaches will lay the foundation for Quantum Diagnostic Platforms that can accelerate the adoption of these most sensitive possible single-entity assays.

To learn more about quantum diagnostics, click the button below:

Patents

Di Carlo D, Ozcan A, Garner O, Munoz HE, and Riche C. "Label-free digital brightfield analysis of nucleic
acid amplification." U.S. Patent Application No. 20180373921.


Di Carlo D and Wu CY. "Particle-drop structures and methods for making and using the same." W.O.
Patent Application No. 201815935.


Ozcan A, Garner O, Di Carlo D, Wei Q, Tseng D, and Kong J. "Mobile phone based fluorescent multi-well
plate reader." W.O. Patent Application No. 201813647.


Ozcan A, Garner O, Di Carlo D, and Wei Feng S. "Antimicrobial susceptibility testing device and method
for use with portable electronic devices." W.O. Patent Application No. 201802346.


Di Carlo D, Kong J, Ozcan A, and Garner O. "Enhanced fluorescence readout and reduced inhibition for
nucleic acid amplification tests." W.O. Patent Application No. 2017201060.


Di Carlo D and Kahkeshani S. "System and method for droplet formation and manipulation using
ferrofluids." U.S. Patent Application No. 20180296992.


Ozcan A, Berg B, Cortazar B, Tseng D, Feng S, Ozkan H, Garner O, and Di Carlo D. "Micro-plate reader for
ELISA testing." W.O. Patent Application No. 2016205736.


Di Carlo D and Kim D. "Homogenous entropy-driven biomolecular assay (HEBA)." W.O. Patent
Application No. 20180179576.


Di Carlo D, Murray C, Pao E, and Tseng P. "Method and device for separation of particles and cells using
gradient magnetic ratcheting." U.S. Patent Application 20170362563.


Di Carlo D and Kong J. "Method and device for detecting molecules or particles using fractionalized
volumes." W.O. Patent Application 2015058103.


Di Carlo D, Gossett D, and Weaver W. "Method and device for multi-parameter imaging within a single
fluorescent channel." U.S. Patent No. 9222870.

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