Rapid fingerprinting of cardiac biomarkers


To design a miniaturized blood test for both point-of-care and emergency diagnosis of cardiovascular disease based on the mass distribution of a family of cardiac biomarkers

Anticipated Impact: 

Improved allocation of health-care resources through more efficient patient triage


This LSDF award will be used to design a miniaturized blood test both for "point of care" and emergency diagnosis of cardiovascular disease based on the mass distribution of a family of cardiac biomarkers, especially the troponins. This instrument will produce a "fingerprint" of the phosphorylation state of these biomarkers which is expected to be both predictive and diagnostic of cardiovascular health.

Miniaturization can change the way that health care is delivered by moving it closer to the patient, by decreasing the blood sample size from a test tube to finger-prick volumes and by reducing the cost-per-test. Miniaturization can dramatically reduce the time it takes to analyze complex samples from more than an hour at medical laboratories to a few minutes at the patient's bedside.

The proposed labchip will use state-of-the-art microfluidics to prepare microliter blood samples for processing, then concentrate and fractionate the target biomarkers before delivering them for analysis on a FRET (Förster resonance energy transfer) array. The optical signal generated by FRET will contain information about the state of each biomarker which will provide a real-time snapshot of the patient's cardiovascular health.

The key challenges to development of this platform are (1) miniaturization and integration of the supporting off-chip instrumentation, (2) on-chip fractionation and concentration of ultra-trace biomarkers, e.g., the phosphorylated troponins, (3) implementation of microscale FRET and (4) automation of the platform optics and electronics.

Heart Attack Diagnosis

Grant Update

Principal Investigator:
Neil Ivory
Grantee Organization:
Washington State University
Grant Title:
Rapid fingerprinting of cardiac biomarkers.
Grant Cohort and Year:
2007 Beneficial Applications of Technology in Health Care: Improving Health-Care Quality and Cost Effectiveness (01)
Grant Period:
01/01/2008 - 12/31/2011 (Completed)
Grant Amount:
This is the final report for the award period plus a 1-year extension. My co-investigators, together with our students, have achieved most of our milestones and continue to work on those which are still not complete. In particular, we have started to file patent disclosures based on the intellectual property developed during the past four years and we have continued to publish our work in the technical literature. We are also working with an entrepreneur to help start a new company, pHoretic Technologies, which will further develop this technology and which will have a presence in Washington State.

Impact in Washington

Location of LSDF Grantee
Locations of Collaborations/Areas of Impact

Legislative Districts:

Health Impacts

Heart Attack Diagnosis

Jan 26, 2008
The Spokesman-Review