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Review
, 90, 459-474

Advances in Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction (dPCR) and Its Emerging Biomedical Applications

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Review

Advances in Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction (dPCR) and Its Emerging Biomedical Applications

Lei Cao et al. Biosens Bioelectron.

Abstract

Since the invention of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in 1985, PCR has played a significant role in molecular diagnostics for genetic diseases, pathogens, oncogenes and forensic identification. In the past three decades, PCR has evolved from end-point PCR, through real-time PCR, to its current version, which is the absolute quantitive digital PCR (dPCR). In this review, we first discuss the principles of all key steps of dPCR, i.e., sample dispersion, amplification, and quantification, covering commercialized apparatuses and other devices still under lab development. We highlight the advantages and disadvantages of different technologies based on these steps, and discuss the emerging biomedical applications of dPCR. Finally, we provide a glimpse of the existing challenges and future perspectives for dPCR.

Keywords: Absolute quantification; Beads; Deoxyribonucleic acid; Digital PCR; Droplet; Microfluidics; Microwell.

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