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Advanced CELL Monitoring and SENSeing platform for Biomedical Research

Awarded: NOK 0.20 mill.

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Project Period:

2023 - 2024



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The overall objective of this EIC Pathfinder project – CELL-SENSe – is to achieve proof of concept (POC) for a breakthrough technology platform for analysing complex (biological) fluids, enabling, for the first time, high-throughput, label-free, real-time, bidirectional sensing & acting capabilities at a microscale. The platform will allow the analysis of multiple and heterogenous components, with high precision, in one go. The EIC Pathfinder project will support our interdisciplinary consortium in the initial development stages of the technology, which includes these innovative and high-risk components: 1. A proprietary porous silicon disc with > 1 million microwells, causing highly uniform sample partitioning across the surface, where each well acts as a self-contained workspace for in-depth cell studies. 2. A range of novel, high affinity peptides to be chemically immobilised inside the wells for high specificity binding. 3. Microelectronic sensors that enable high-throughput and highly specific biosensing. 4. A stack of high precision filters, offering exponential amplification of analytical capabilities. 5. An AI-assisted optical system to monitor sample spreading and properties of cells captured within the microwells. The POC will focus on liquid cancer biopsies. Indeed, there is an urgent need for high-throughput technologies capable of swiftly analysing complex samples from body fluids, identifying key biological signatures that are needed for tailored medical interventions. Current solutions focused on single biomarkers provide a throughput limitation on the insights needed towards precision medicine. Despite this clear need, the platform holds high promise for a plethora of other medical/non-applications, including within the dairy and pharmaceutical manufacturing industries, in fish-farming, and water analysis, where high-throughput analytical systems are urgently needed to accelerate and improve processes, ensuring efficiency, precision, and quality.

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