Automated Clinical Microscopy for Point-of-care Diagnosis:
In this project, we are developing an "imaging" based point-of-care diagnostic device, which can fully-automate the complete work flow of conventional clinical microscopy. A custom designed portable digital microscope augmented with dedicated microfluidic lab-on-chips would enable process automation, as well as, cost-effective implementation of microscopic diagnosis of malaria. Such an inexpensive, portable, and easy-to-use (requiring minimal skilled human intervention) diagnostic device would greatly enhance the quality of health-care available to the rural population of the world. The technology we are developing is capable of performing automated diagnosis of various Haematological Disorders (such as Sickle-cell Anaemia and Spherocytosis), Infectious Diseases (such as Malaria and Tuberculosis), and different types of Cancer (such as Leukaemia and CTC-circulating tumour cell identification based), along with the capability to perform commonly needed Complete Blood Counting (CBC), using a single testing device.
Neonatal & Maternal Screening Device:
We aim to develop an integrated point-of-care chemi-optofluidic-based RT-PCR platform that can process various types of biological samples in a semi- or completely-automated fashion, which will be used for diagnosing maternal & child health. Independent steps such as cell lysis, DNA purification and gene analysis is integrated onto a single device which will tremendously reduce the complexity of the system. Downscaling biological assays and miniaturization of analytical systems on the microfluidics platform has many advantages such as reduced sample and reagent consumption, shorter analysis time and less sample handling. This will reduce the cost as well as the need of skilled technicians which is a major hurdle in delivering healthcare technology to rural parts of India. In this project we aim at developing a POC device having the aforementioned features for performing RT-PCR that helps in neonatal and maternal screening for metabolic disorders and infectious diseases such as HPV, HIV, Hepatitis, malaria, etc.