In the ageing society, sick sinus syndrome (SSS) is rapidly becoming one of the major arrhythmia problems. High survival rate with appropriate medical care indicates the paramount importance of early diagnosis. Interests have intensified in plasma biochemical markers to predict susceptibility and aid in patient management. Cardiac troponin I (cTnI) is the most widely used biomarker, due to its nearly complete cardiac tissue specificity. An elevated cTnI concentration was reported to be associated with SSS. A combination of cTnI and myoglobin, one of the earliest biomarkers released into blood circulation, can achieve diagnostic sensitivity of 97% with a 99% negative predictive value within 90 mins of ED presentation. However, blood testing of these biomarkers in current clinical practice represents a challenge for prime time diagnosis due to the time delay caused by laborious analysis and the logistics of sample handling to central labs. Therefore, the objective of this project is to take a multidisciplinary approach to develop an innovative biochip for rapid and simultaneous biosensing of these proteins at point of patient care. Specifically, a nanoparticle surface plasmon resonance (nanoSPR) biochip based on gold nanorod probes will be developed. Effect of the magnetic nanoparticles on the nanoSPR sensitivity and specificity enhancement will be systematically studied. The nano-biochip will then be integrated with a highly sensitive CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor) image sensor and nanohole array to develop an innovative, fully operational lab-on-a-chip biosensor. The fundamental studies will provide innovative insights into MNP mediated nanoSPR mechanism to develop an ultra-sensitive, multiplexed biosensing. System integration of nanoSPR biochip with portable optical detector will transform bio-analysis in clinical environment to a point of care format for prime time medical diagnostics to improve clinical outcome.
Sick sinus syndrome is becoming a significant healthcare problem in a rapidly ageing society and the dysfunction will lead to sudden cardiac death if unattended. This project will develop an innovative, fully operational, ultra-sensitive nano-biosensor. The proposed device in this translational project will improve non-invasive diagnosis by rapid blood testing of SSS associated biomarkers.
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