Using MEMS structures as a microminature medical diagnostic laboratory is an established idea, but one that remains stuck in the laboratory environment. Through the MIRACLE project, the European Union has been funding the development of a viable point of care solution since September 2010. This project aims to take the technology out of the research environment and commercialize it.
ICsense has been working closely to develop the ASIC solution for miniaturization of the sensor system in close cooperation with the MIRACLE partners. Specifically, ICsense designed the impedance spectroscopy measurement, the DEP (dielectrophoresys) control, the signal processing and analog-to-digital conversion that enables the electrical identification of individual cancer cells.
ICsense expertise in lab-on-chip MEMS
The specialized interface ASIC developed by ICsense can measure individual cell membrane impedances over a frequency range from 10kHz to 1MHz with an accuracy better than 1 fF/µm2. Consider that this is 100 times smaller than the typical parasitic impedance of an ASIC and you’ll understand the complexity of this measurement task. ICsense’s ASIC captures data from a matrix of 100×100 cells that, in full speed scan mode, can be read out in 250 µs.