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Optically Induced Thermal Gradients for Protein Characterization in Nanolitre-scale Samples in Microfluidic Devices

Sagar, DM; Aoudjane, S; Gaudet, M; Aeppli, G; Dalby, PA; (2013) Optically Induced Thermal Gradients for Protein Characterization in Nanolitre-scale Samples in Microfluidic Devices. Scientific Reports , 3 , Article 2130. 10.1038/srep02130. Green open access

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Abstract

Proteins are the most vital biological functional units in every living cell. Measurement of protein stability is central to understanding their structure, function and role in diseases. While proteins are also sought as therapeutic agents, they can cause diseases by misfolding and aggregation in vivo. Here we demonstrate a novel method to measure protein stability and denaturation kinetics, on unprecedented timescales, through optically-induced heating of nanolitre samples in microfluidic capillaries. We obtain protein denaturation kinetics as a function of temperature, and accurate thermodynamic stability data, from a snapshot experiment on a single sample. We also report the first experimental characterization of optical heating in controlled microcapillary flow, verified by computational fluid dynamics modelling. Our results demonstrate that we now have the engineering science in hand to design integrated all-optical microfluidic chips for a diverse range of applications including in-vitro DNA amplification, healthcare diagnostics, and flow chemistry.

Type: Article
Title: Optically Induced Thermal Gradients for Protein Characterization in Nanolitre-scale Samples in Microfluidic Devices
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/srep02130
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep02130
Language: English
Additional information: PMCID: PMC3703920 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License [http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/], which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Lab-on-a-chip; Biological fluorescence; Molecular conformation; Thermodynamics
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Biochemical Engineering
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > London Centre for Nanotechnology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1399715
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