Portable and Wearable Medical Devices: A Nanotechnology Approach

C.E. Credits: P.A.C.E. CE Florida CE
Speaker
  • Associate Dean of Science, Research Professor of Chemistry & Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN), University of Waterloo
    Biography

      Professor Xiaowu (Shirley) Tang joined the Department of Chemistry & Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) at the University of Waterloo (UW) in 2006. Currently, she is the Associate Dean of Science, Research, and a member of the Board of Directors for WIN. During 2014-2017, she served as the Director of Nanotechnology Engineering (NE) program, Canada's only undergraduate NE program. Prior to joining UW, she received her Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and pursued postdoctoral work at Stanford University. She also had 3 years of industrial experience in Silicon Valley, California, and is a co-founder of LeNano Diagnostics, Inc, a company incorporated in 2016. The Tang group is internationally recognized for its pioneer work on hybrid nanobio- materials and devices, with contributions particularly to the material, surface, and physical chemistries dealing with carbon nanostructures. Of significance is the development of biomarker sensing platforms for early diagnosis and management of chronic diseases. A low-cost point-of-care testing platform based on carbon nanotube biosensors is currently under transition to commercialization. Another noteworthy aspect of Tang's research is the creation of a class of hybrid scaffold materials for tissue engineering, which integrates functional nanostructures and biopolymers to offer extraordinary mechanical, electrical, and rheological properties. The new materials, combined with 3D-printing and microfabrication, could provide disruptive technologies for the fabrication of tissues/organs, which can find important applications in drug screening and regenerative medicine. Her work has led to publications on prestigious journals, such as Nature Nanotechnology, Nature Biotechnology, Journal of American Chemical Society, Advanced Materials, and Nano Letters, as well as patent applications, multiple industrial partnerships, media reports, and invited lectures. Prof. Tang received the Leader's Opportunity Award from Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) in 2008 and the Stars in Global Health Award from Grand Challenges Canada in 2012, Award for Outstanding Mid-Career Achievements in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, NanoOntario, in 2018.


    Abstract

    Point-of-care testing (POCT) is destined to play a much greater role in chronic disease diagnosis and management. Advanced POCT systems are being developed to deliver less costly and more acute healthcare in a patient’s home, but remain scarce. Especially lacking are miniature devices, similar to the commonly used blood glucose meter, to quantitatively detect low concentrations of protein biomarkers in blood. Here, a unique integrated system solution is presented, which represents a significant step beyond proof-of-concept high sensitivity nanosensors, for quantitative reading of b-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) in outpatient blood. BNP is an established biomarker for early heart failure (HF) diagnosis and prognosis. HF is an epidemic affecting more than 26 million people worldwide and a chronic disease with ever increasing prevalence. Currently, accurate and quantitative BNP blood tests are only available in central laboratory and emergency room using venous blood. Highly sensitive carbon nanotube thin film (CNT-TF) impedance sensors are integrated into a user-friendly POCT system, NanoBot, which consists of two parts: a disposable test strip and a miniature electrical readout unit. Using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), combined with standard addition, NanoBot is demonstrated to detect blood BNP with a limit of detection (LOD), precision, and accuracy comparable to those of a standard immunofluorescence assay (IFA) and a commercial emergency room POCT device. A pilot clinical study with patient-derived blood plasma validates that NanoBot has not only strong performance, but also other advantages such as low sample volume, label-free and wash-free detection. Collectively, NanoBot’s performance and operational characteristics signify its promising potential as a POCT device for home-use heart failure diagnosis.

    Learning Objectives:

    1. Various aspects of electrochemical immunosensors for high-sensitivity detection of protein biomarkers

    2. Recent advances and challenges in developing nano-biosensors

    3. The need for disruptive technology to make the change from centralized healthcare to distributed healthcare


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