Advances in microfluidic PCR for point-of-care infectious disease diagnostics

Biotechnol Adv. Nov-Dec 2011;29(6):830-9. doi: 10.1016/j.biotechadv.2011.06.017. Epub 2011 Jun 30.


Global burdens from existing or emerging infectious diseases emphasize the need for point-of-care (POC) diagnostics to enhance timely recognition and intervention. Molecular approaches based on PCR methods have made significant inroads by improving detection time and accuracy but are still largely hampered by resource-intensive processing in centralized laboratories, thereby precluding their routine bedside- or field-use. Microfluidic technologies have enabled miniaturization of PCR processes onto a chip device with potential benefits including speed, cost, portability, throughput, and automation. In this review, we provide an overview of recent advances in microfluidic PCR technologies and discuss practical issues and perspectives related to implementing them into infectious disease diagnostics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Communicable Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Developing Countries
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Microfluidic Analytical Techniques*
  • Point-of-Care Systems*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction*