This application aims to develop a portable, diagnostic system useable by minimally trained personnel in the field for the diagnosis of pulmonary diseases using saliva as a sample specimen. The ultimate goal of the project is to create a universal platform for performing systemic diagnosis using saliva. The device will be fully integrated and self-contained. A saliva specimen will be loaded onto a disposable microfluidic card containing all the necessary components and reagents to process the sample and measure multiple clinically relevant analytes with an optical fiber microarray. The results will be read optically and reported both via a liquid crystal display and over a wireless network. Pulmonary diseases will be targeted including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)/emphysema, cystic fibrosis, and acute pneumonia. Saliva samples from both diseased and control patients will be obtained and analyzed using a variety of fluorescent-based assays. The initial phase will be carried out in an outpatient clinic setting, where patients will be followed at regular intervals when stable and during exacerbations of their disease. Samples will be collected and analyzed at baseline and during clinically unstable conditions allowing analysis of change from baseline as well as single sample correlations with clinical status. To directly test our overall hypothesis that saliva contains substances that correlate with disease, we will also collect and analyze key representative respiratory secretions and compare these results with those obtained from salivary analysis. Analytes that correlate with disease will be selected and converted into bead-based sensors for use with optical fiber microarrays. Analytes to be examined will include DNA/RNA, proteins such as cytokines, and small molecules and ions. All sample preparation and pre-treatments will be incorporated onto a microfluidic cassette. The disposable cassette will be integrated with the sensor array, enabling many clinical parameters to be measured simultaneously. The array will be interrogated by a portable optical reader that will be designed and integrated with the microfluidic cassette and the optical fiber array. We will demonstrate efficacy of the system at the lab bench and later provide one Alpha and three Beta units to the clinical investigators for pilot studies and expanded field trials. ? ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
Research Project--Cooperative Agreements (U01)
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Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZDE1-GH (49))
Program Officer
Shum, Lillian
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Tufts University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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