The University of Illinois at Chicago has received a $500,000, five-year grant from the National Science Foundation to support the Center for Advanced Design and Manufacturing of Integrated Microfluidics.
Led by Ian Papautsky, University of Illinois Cancer Center member and Richard and Loan Hill Professor of Bioengineering in the UIC College of Engineering, the center, also known by its initials CADMIM, has two sites – one at UIC and another at the University of California, Irvine — and focuses on developing miniature devices that can perform biochemical analytical functions quickly and cheaply.
These devices can be used to do things like rapidly detect dangerous toxins in the blood, quickly screen hundreds of potential drugs, isolate cells for cancer diagnostics and treatment, or provide information on plant health that can be used to improve crop outputs.
The UIC site has expertise in microfluidics, cell separations, 3D printing and point-of-care sensors as well as in creating tiny living model ‘organ-on-a-chip’ systems. The center is currently funding a project on rapid and automated dissociation of tissue biopsies into single cells for applications in liver cancer in collaboration with GNF (The Genomics Institute of Novartis Research Foundation).
The total funding for the two-site center is $1.25 million, and is a second phase of investment in the CADMIM, which launched five years ago with a $836,000 grant from the NSF.