|Title of Invention||
A DISPOSABLE STRIP
|Abstract||The present invention provides a micro mechanical system for performing assays for determining the presence of one or more selected analytes in a sample. The device comprises of a base and a disposable strip with at least one reaction well. Reagents in the reaction chambers react with the sample to yield a physically detectable change. Sensors in the base are configured to detect and or quantify the presence of a sample in the reaction well and of analytes in the sample. The signal is converted to an output on a visual display window on the external part of the base.|
|Full Text||RELATED APPLICATION DATA
 This application claims the benefit of United States provisional patent application
number 60/515,731 filed on October 29,2003, which is herein incorporated by reference in its
FIELD OF INVENTION
 The present invention relates to microfluidics systems for performing assays for
determining the presence of one or more selected analytes in a sample.
 Qualitative and quantitative immuno- and chemical assays have gained
acceptance as important tools in the medical and food industries. These methods have been
used for the diagnosis of disease conditions, detection of analytes, and for the detection of
microbes, such as bacteria. These methods of diagnosis have established effectiveness, and
the methods have made it easier for physicians to monitor and manage patients undergoing
various forms of therapy.
 Traditionally, the diagnostic assays have been performed in hospital and clinic
settings, and involve the use of sophisticated and expensive equipment, that require specially
trained personnel for their operation. Further, the assay results are sometimes not available for
days or weeks after the samples from the patients have been obtained. The presently available
diagnostic assays are thus .costly, time consuming, and not convenient.
 Attempts have been made to develop less costly assays. For example, a typical
home self-test for detecting blood components requires the patient to prick a finger with a
sterilized lancet, apply a drop of blood sample to a sample application area on the disposable
strip, and then wait for the results. Assays that use other bodily fluids, such as urine
essentially work in a similar manner. These devices are designed such that a typical lay
person can perform the assays correctly with very little training. However, these assay
systems generally suffer from low accuracy or require a number of preparative steps be
performed that could compromise the test results, and are thus not convenient.
 U.S. Patent No. 5,580,794 to Allen Michael describes a single use electronic
assay device that assays for specific analytes in a given sample. U.S. Patent No. 4,806,312 to
Greenquist describes a multizone analytical element having detectable signal concentration
zone. U.S. Patent No. 4,627,445 to Garcia et al. describes a hand-held portable medical
diagnostic system for checking measurement of blood glucose, urea nitrogen, hemoglobin, or
blood components, where a disposable needle or lance probe package carries a chemical
reagent strip such as blood reacting chemistry, a visual readout, and a computer system.
 U.S. Patent No. 4,197,734 to A. Rosenberg describes an apparatus that is capable
of measuring the clotting time of blood. The apparatus includes a support frame, which
supports a syringe containing a blood sample, and a turntable that rotates. Blood from the
syringe drops onto the turntable where the clotting time is automatically and graphically
depicted by a chart that is rotated on the turntable. The apparatus can also be employed to
determine variations in the viscosity of blood plasma and other fluids.
 U.S. Patent No. 3,486,859 to Greiner et al describes an apparatus that has a
double arm holder with blood liquid reactant chambers that are connected to each other via a
small capillary conduit. An air pump is provided for applying pressure changes to one of the
chambers to effect periodic mixing of the liquids via the capillary conduit. Indicator means
are included to detect the progressive restriction of the capillary conduit upon coagulation of
 The methods-described above have severe limitations which make them
extremely challenging for home use. Some of the methods require special blood preparations
and handling, making them suitable for a central clinic with well-trained staff, while others are
expensive, or not accurate. Thus, there is a need for assay systems for detecting analytes that
are accurate, convenient, and inexpensive.
 The present invention provides methods and micro technological systems for
performing assays for determining the presence of one or more preselected analytes in a
sample. The apparatus includes a disposable plastic strip that can be inserted into a portable
handheld test analysis machine. The strip isolates the sample such that it is not in contact with
the machine and the sample is not contaminated.
 The disposable strip of the present invention can have a plurality of defined wells
on a solid support. The wells can be linked by capillary channel. The surface of the wells and
the capillary channels can be coated with reagents to assist in drawing the liquid sample from
the sample well into the reaction wells. Inside at least one of the reaction chambers is at least
one magnetic stir bar which can be attracted magnetically and driven by a magnetic moving
device arranged outside the strip in the test analysis machine. The magnetic stir bar is capable
of executing motions that mix the reaction components, move reaction components, exchange
or systematically deliver reagents to targets in the cartridge, and the like.
 The strip can be placed on a portable handheld machine having sensors
configured to detect and or quantify the presence of an analyte in the reaction wells of the.
strip, while responding to the physically detectable changes, producing signals which correlate
to the presence of and or amount of the selected analyte in the sample. The reagents can
comprise the detection system, whereby a detectable result occurs in relation to the presence of
an analyte. The signal can be converted to an output on a visual display window on the
external part of the base.
 To test a sample, the disposable strip can be inserted into the base, and the
sample drop can be placed in the sample application well of the strip. The sample can be
drawn into the reaction well through the internal channels. As the sample is drawn into the
reaction wells, sensors detect the movement and activate the magnetic stir bar at the
appropriate times which mix the reagents within the sample well. For timed assays, a
microprocessor contained within the base begins a time count while the sensors, which can be
electrical or optical, monitor various parts of the strip for specific analyte responses. When
detected and or quantified, the results are reported qualitatively or quantitatively with the
appropriate units in the display window on the base.
 The motion and the sensors can be microprocessor controlled. A heater assembly
can be activated in the base, for temperature-sensitive assays such as coagulation tests and the
temperature can be held constant or varied in a predetermined way through the duration of the
 In one aspect of the invention^ a disposable strip is described where the
disposable strip comprises a first solid substrate comprising a sample collection well, a
reference well, and a reaction well, wherein the wells are in fluidic communication via a first
capillary channels; and a second solid substrate comprising holes wherein the first solid
substrate and the second solid substrate are joined and the holes communicate with the wells.
 In another aspect of the invention, a disposable strip comprising a first solid
substrate comprising a sample application well, a reference well, and a reaction well, wherein
the wells are in fluidic communication via capillary channels, and wherein the reference well
comprises a first lysing agent and the reaction well comprises a second lysing agent, an
antibody, and a stir bar; a second solid substrate comprising holes wherein the first solid
substrate and the second solid substrate are joined and the holes communicate with the wells;
and a membrane having a capture zone wherein the membrane is connected to the reaction
well via a second capillary channel is described.
 In yet another aspect, the invention pertains to a method for determining the
percentage of hemoglobin that is HbAlc, the method comprising providing a disposable strip
comprising a first solid substrate comprising a sample well, a reference well, and a reaction
well, wherein the wells are in fluidic communication via a first capillary channel, and wherein
the reference well comprises a first lysing agent and the reaction well comprises a second
lysing agent, a HbAlc specific antibody, and a stir bar, a second solid substrate comprising
holes wherein the first solid substrate and the second solid substrate are joined and the holes
communicate with the wells; and a membrane having a capture zone wherein the membrane is
connected to the reaction well via a second capillary channel; placing a sample in the sample
application well; adding a diluent to the sample application well; determining the total
hemoglobin from the reference cell and the total HbAlc from the capture zone; and dividing
the total HbAlc by total hemoglobin to obtain the percentage of hemoglobin that is HbAlc.
 These and other aspects of the present invention will become evident upon
reference to the following detailed description. In addition, various references are set forth
herein which describe in more detail certain procedures or compositions, and are therefore
incorporated by reference in their entirety.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OBDRAWINGS \NY
 Figure 1 illustrates a perspective view of the disposable strip with a set of
interconnected reaction chambers and a moveable member in one of the chambers.
 Figure 2 illustrates another view of the disposable strip comprising a composite
of membranes assembled to isolate the blood components and directing the desired analyte to
the proper capture zones.
 Figure 3 illustrates a perspective view of the main components in the base device
as described in detail below.
 Unless otherwise stated, the following terms used in this application, including
the specification and claims, have the definitions given below. It must be noted that, as used
in the specification and the appended claims, the singular forms "a," "an" and "the" include
plural referents unless the context clearly dictates otherwise.
 All publications, patents and patent applications cited herein, whether supra or
infra, are hereby incorporated by reference in their entirety.
 As used herein, the term "subject" encompasses mammals and non-mammals.
Examples of mammals include, but are not limited to, any member of the Mammalian class:
humans, non-human primates such as chimpanzees, and other apes and monkey species; farm
animals such as cattle, horses, sheep, goats, swine; domestic animals such as rabbits, dogs, and
cats; laboratory animals including rodents, such as rats, mice and guinea pigs, and the like.
Examples of non-mammals include, but are not limited to, birds, fish and the like. The term
does not denote a particular age or gender.
 The term "antibody," as used herein, includes, but is not limited to a polypeptide
substantially encoded by an immunoglobulin gene or immunoglobulin genes, or fragments
thereof which specifically bind and recognize an analyte (antigen). "Antibody" also includes,
but is not limited to, a polypeptide substantially encoded by an immunoglobulin gene or
immunoglobulin genes, or fragments thereof which specifically bind and recognize the
antigen-specific binding region (idiotype) of antibodies produced by the host in response to
exposure to trichomonas antigen(s). Examples include polyclonal, monoclonal, chimeric,
humanized, and single chain antibodies, and the like. Fragments of immunoglobulins, include
Fab fragments and fragments produced by an expression library, including phage display.
See, e.g., Paul, Fundamental Immunology, 3rd Ed., 1993, Raven Press, New York, for antibody
structure and terminology.
 The terms "specifically binds to" or "specifically immunoreactive with" refers to
a binding reaction which is determinative of the presence of the target analyte in the presence
of a heterogeneous population of proteins and other biologies. Thus, under designated assay
conditions, the specified binding moieties bind preferentially to a particular target analyte and
do not bind in a significant amount to other components present in a test sample. Specific
binding to a target analyte under such conditions may require a binding moiety that is selected
for its specificity for a particular target analyte. A variety of immunoassay formats may be
used to select antibodies specifically immunoreactive with a particular antigen. For example,
solid-phase ELISA immunoassays are routinely used to select monoclonal antibodies
specifically immunoreactive with an analyte. See Harlow and Lane (1988) Antibodies, A
Laboratory Manual, Cold Spring Harbor Publications, New York, for a description of
immunoassay formats and conditions that can be used to determine specific immunoreactivity.
Typically a specific or selective reaction will provide a signal to noise ratio at least twice
background and more typically more than 10 to 100 times background.
 As used herein, the terms "label" and "detectable label" refer to a molecule
capable of detection, including, but not limited to, radioactive isotopes,- fluorescers,
chemiluminescers, chromophores, enzymes, enzyme substrates, enzyme cofactors, enzyme
inhibitors, chromophores, dyes, metal ions, metal sols, ligands (e.g., biotin, avidin, strepavidin
or haptens) and the like.
 As used herein, a "solid support" refers to a solid surface such as a plastic plate,
magnetic bead, latex bead, microtiter plate well, glass plate, nylon, agarose, acrylamide, and
 "Specific" in reference to the binding of two molecules or a molecule and a
complex of molecules refers to the specific recognition of one for the other and the formation
of a stable complex as compared to substantially less recognition of other molecules and the
lack of formation of stable complexes with such other molecules. Exemplary of specific
binding are antibody-antigen interactions, enzyme-substrate interactions, polynucleotide
hybridizations and/or formation of duplexes, cellular receptor-ligand interactions, and so forth.
 The invention pertains to a disposable strip Ihat can be used for performing
qualitative and quantitative immuno- and chemical assays. On the strip are at least three wells,
where the wells can be in fluidic communication with each other via capillary channels. In
one well is placed the sample, preferably a liquid sample, for analysis. The sample fluid
moves into the other two wells via the capillary channels. One of the wells can serve as a
standard that measures the total analyte in the sample. The other well can serve as the reaction
well, where individual components of the sample can be identified. The disposable strip can
be placed in an analyzer (also referred to herein as a "base") that detects the individual
components of the sample and the total analyte in the sample. The analyzer includes a display
system that can display the results of the analysis as well as provided instructions during the
operation of the assay.
 In one application, the percent total hemoglobin that is hemoglobin Ale (HbAlc)
in human red blood cell can be determined. Blood from a subject can be deposited in the
sample well. The blood is moved into the other two wells via the capillary channels. In the
reference well can be placed a reagent that lyses the cells thereby releasing the hemoglobin
from the red blood cells. The concentration of hemoglobin in the reference cell can be
measured using infrared or ultraviolet measurements. In the reaction well can be placed a
lysate, a known amount of an antibody specific for HbAlc, and a magnetic stirrer. When
blood moves into the reaction well, the magnet stirs the liquids in the well thereby mixing
them well. The lysate lyses the cells, and the antibody binds to HbAlc. After a specified
period of time, the display can instruct the operator to add a diluent to the reaction well. The
diluent pushes the liquid in the reaction chamber through another capillary channel towards
one or more capture zones. The capture zones have immobilized on them antigens that bind to
the bound antibody complex only, and on a separate part of the zone other antigens that bind
to all antibodies. The antibody-HbAlc complex can be captured by the antigens in the first
part of the capture zone, and all the antibodies can be captured by the antigens in the latter part
of the capture zone. A detection system can be used to detect the antibodies bound in the first
and the second part of the capture zone. The ratio and/or the sum of the two zones can be used
to quantify the amount of HbAlc present in the sample. The ratio of the first zone to the total
hemoglobin from the reference cell can provide the percentage of HbAlc in the blood sample.
The results can be displayed on the display system
IE. MICRO MECHANICAL SYSTEM
 The invention provides a disposable strip, a portable handheld machine (i.e., a
base), and a combination comprising a disposable strip and a base. The strip can be placed on
the machine for performing assays, for detecting analytes, and for displaying information such
as instructions and results. One aspect of the disposable strip is illustrated in Fig. 1. The
disposable strip can be made by joining together two or more solid supports with grooves
present in at least one of the supports. The solid support can be rectangular, circular, oval, or
any shape. The support can be made from a suitable material that is selected on its properties,
such as good thermal conductivity, clarity for optical transmission, mechanical properties for
easy welding, surface properties that allow for uniform coating and stability of reagent, and
neutrality to the liquid medium to prevent interference with the assay. For this purpose,
suitable plastics include those with high free surface energies and low water sorption,
including PETG, polyester (Mylar®), polycarbonate (Lexan®), polyvinyl chloride,
polystyrene, SAN, acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS), particularly ABS supplied by Bofg
Warner under the trade name Cycolac, among others. When the solid support is a
hydrophobic plastic, it can be treated by art-known methods to reader the surfaces hydrophilic,
such as by plasma etching and by corona treatment. Alternatively and equivalently, a
commercially-available molded solid support can be used in the practice of the invention.
 For purposes of illustration, this embodiment of the invention is described by
reference to a disposable strip formed by joining two solid supports. At least one of the solid
supports has grooves or cavities that serve as the reaction chambers 5 and 7, and capillary
channels 2 and 8. The grooves can be any geometric shape, and are preferably circular. The
grooves have dimensions that are sufficient volume to hold the samples and to allow for the
reaction to occur. Thus, the circular grooves can have a diameter of between about 0.01 mm
to about 100 nun, depending on the length and width of the support material, and can have a
height of about 0.001 mm to about 4 mm, depending on the thickness of the support material.
The diameter and height of the grooves can be easily determined by the one of skill in the art.
In one aspect of the invention, one of the support pieces has holes drilled through to the
grooves where the holes serve as the vent holes 3 and 6. Further, the holes can allow access to
the well where the sample will be placed, such as the sample application well, 1. Prior to the
joining of the two pieces, the moveable member, 4, can be inserted in the desired reaction
 In the molding process, energy-directing ridges are needed at least on the outline
adjacent to the periphery of the groove of at least one of the two plastic pieces. When welded
ultrasonically, the two plastic pieces are glued together along the energy ridges forming an air-
tight seal around the chambers and channels, with the only access to the exterior from the
reaction chambers being the vent holes and sample application well. The surface of the
reaction chamber can optionally be slightly textured for use with moveable members. The
texturing can accommodate a disjoining pressure, n. II, is the pressure, in the case of two
plates immersed in a medium, in excess of the external pressure, that must be applied to the
medium between the plates to maintain a given separation. In this case, II is numerically just
the force of attraction or repulsion between the moveable member and the surfaces of the
reaction chamber per unit area. The wider the moveable member, the greater would be the
pressure between the surfaces and texturing would eliminate any undesired clamping of the
moveable member unto the walls of the reaction chamber. A more general definition for
disjoining pressure is
II = - l/A(5G/5x) A, T, V where
T = Temperature
V = Volume
G = Gibb's free energy
 The moveable member, 4, can be made by use of stainless steel or a combination
of stainless steel with any other desired material so that it is capable of being attracted and
driven by an external magnetic moving device. The material can be any form of magnetizable
alloy with a stainless covering to prevent corrosion or specially coated for bonding of specific
molecules. The thickness of the movable member is based on the height of the reaction
chamber. It has to be small enough to fit in the reaction chamber and move freely. For a
reaction chamber cavity of a height of 0.010 inches, the thickness of the moveable member
can be between about 0.007 to about 0.008 inches.
 The mode for applying the sample to the reaction chambers as well as other
reagents, such as salt and sugar solutions to the capillary channels include spraying, painting,
lyophilization, evaporation, adsorption, covalent conjugation or the like. For reagents with
large particulate components, spray painting or lyophilization would be adequate.
Biodeposition of pico liter drop sizes results in instantaneous drying when dispensed at room
temperature due to the size of the drops.
 An assembled disposable strip is illustrated in Figure 2, where 5 is an absorbent
pad, 7 is an internal reference membrane strip, 9 is a capillary channel, 11 is a reaction
chamber, 13 is a capillary channel, 15 is a sample receptacle, 17 is a sample application port,
19 is a reaction chamber, 21 is a moveable member, 23 are capture zones on a base membrane
 Figure 3 is a perspective diagram of the main components of the analyzer into
which the disposable strip is inserted prior to applying a test sample. The disposable strip can
be positioned at 46 on the base. The strip can be placed on top of a heater assembly 44 that
may accommodate a sensor (emitters and or detectors) embedded in it or in close proximity
but arranged such that a signal goes through the reaction chamber. Another set of sensors that
also can serve as emitters,detectors, or both can be positioned on the other side of the
disposable strip (not shown). It is to be understood that the reflective beam arrangement, the
detector and the emitter can be on the same side of the strip, depending on the detection
mechanism that is used. The detection mechanism is not limited to an optical detection
method, but other methods, such as electrical, radioactive, and other methods could also be
used. An electronic display window 30 can be, but is not limited to, a Liquid Crystal Display,
LCD. 28, represents switches or keys on a membrane for function selection from a menu
displayed on the LCD. The electronic board 36 comprises a microprocessor that controls the
operation and mechanics of the analyzer. The power can be supplied by batteries 38, or any
other source of alternate electrical power supply. The motor 40 drives the magnet, 42, and the
two can be connected, such as by a rod. The defined motion pattern of the motor and magnet
are responsible for creating the corresponding motion of the moveable member in one or more
of the reaction chambers of the disposable strip. 32, represents a connector to an external
power supply and 34 represents a connector for data output.
 An example of a detection system for automated detection for use with the
present disposable strip and associated methods comprises an excitation source, a
rnonochromator (or any device capable of spectrally resolving light components, or a set of
narrow band filters) and a detector array. The excitation source can comprise infrared, blue or
UV wavelengths and the excitation wavelength can be shorter than the emission wavelength(s)
) to be detected. The detection system may be: a broadband UV light source, such as a
deuterium lamp with a filter in front; the output of a white light source such as a xenon lamp
or a deuterium lamp after passing through a rnonochromator to extract out the desired
wavelengths; or any of a number of continuous wave (cw) gas lasers, including but not limited
to any of the Argon Ion laser lines (457,488,514, etc. nm) or a HeCd laser; solid-state diode
lasers in the blue such as GaN and GaAs (doubled) based lasers or the doubled or tripled
output of YAG or YLF based lasers; or any of the pulsed lasers with output in the blue.
 The emitted light from the sample or the reactants in the reaction well can be
detected with a device that provides spectral information for the substrate, e.g., a grating
spectrometer, prism spectrometer, imaging spectrometer, or the like, or use of interference
(bandpass) filters. Using a two-dimensional area imager such as a CCD camera, many objects
may be imaged simultaneously. Spectral information can be generated by collecting more
than one image via different bandpass, longpass, or shortpass filters (interference filters, or
electronically tunable filters are appropriate). More than one imager may be used to gather
data simultaneously through dedicated filters, or the filter may be changed in front of a single
imager. Imaging based systems, like the Biometric Imaging system, scan a surface to find
 Other embodiments appropriate for this system include the use of reagent-coated
membranes systems as part of the strip positioned in a way that allows continuity and directed
sample flow within the entire strip system. The sensory systems would be positioned to be
capable of monitoring the membrane portions of the strip for the analyte or responses being
 A general mode of operation of the device shown in Figure 3 involves the
insertion of the disposable strip shown in Figures 1 and 2 into a receptacle that allows the strip
on one position only. For an assay with a specific temperature requirement, the heater
assembly, 44, heats the disposable strip to the desired temperature controlled by the
microprocessor. The LCD prompts simple steps, after the strip is inserted and the analyzer
turned on, which the operator can follow including the addition of the sample to the sample
receptacle. The instrument can optionally have sensors to determine the presence of adequate
amounts of sample in the reaction chambers and a mechanism to initiate and stop the timing of
the assay. The sensor detect the signals from the completion of the reaction, such as
measuring the transmission of an optical signal emitted and directed through the walls of the
 The applied sample is accurately distributed into the various reaction chambers
via the capillary channels. The positioning of the reaction chambers can be such that
independent reactions can occur in the various reaction chambers even though they share a
common sample from the same pool. The defined modes of movement of the moveable
member ensures proper mixing of the reagent and sample mixtures and also contributes in
inter chamber reagent and sample interchange. For assays that require quantification of an
analyte, the sensory system monitors the changes either in one or more reaction chambers, a
membrane system or the moveable members, until the desired end point is achieved. For
assays requiring just the determination of the presence of an analyte, the sensory system
monitors the specific parts of the strip for the appropriate duration of time. The
microprocessor computes the results quantitatively or qualitatively, which are displayed on the
LCD. The strip can then be removed at the end of the assay and disposed.
 Thus, the operator inserts the strip into strip receptacle in the analyzer. The
operator then pushes a start button, which could automatically be activated by the strip itself,
waits for a prompt to add a drop of sample, and then obtains the results from the display,
typically within a few minutes or seconds, depending on the assay type.
V. DETECTION OF HEMOGLOBIN Ale (HbAlc)
 Glycated hemoglobin refers to a series of minor hemoglobin components that are
formed through the attachment of glucose to the hemoglobin molecule. The human red blood
cell is freely permeable to glucose. Within each red blood cell, glycated hemoglobin is formed
at a rate that is directly proportional to the ambient glucose concentration. Approximately
97% of the total hemoglobin in circulating red blood cells is hemoglobin A. Hemoglobin A
consists of four polypeptide chains, two a-chains and two b-chains. Glycation of the
Hemoglobin A occurs through the covalent coupling of glucose with the N-terminal valine
amino acid of each b-peptide chain. An unstable Schiff base (aldimine) is initially formed
which then undergoes an irreversible Amadori rearrangement to form a stable ketoatnine,
Hemoglobin Ale (HbAlc).
 The life-span of hemoglobin A containing red blood cells averages 120 days.
The percentage of Hemoglobin A that is glycated to HbAlc is directly proportional to the time
that red blood cells are exposed to glucose and to the average glucose concentration
encountered. Measurement of the HbAlc fraction gives an integrated picture of the average
blood glucose concentration during the half-life of the red cells, that is, over the last 60 days.
The level of HbAlc is usually expressed as a percentage of total hemoglobin.
 In normal subjects, HbAlc is typically in the range 3-6% of total hemoglobin. In
patients with elevated glucose levels e.g. in the case of Type I and Type 2 diabetes, the level
may rise to twice the upper limit of normal or more.
 Long-term control of glucose levels in diabetics is very important. Too much
glucose in the blood over many years can damage the eyes, kidneys and nerves. It also
increases the risk for h.eart and blood vessel disease. The measurement of HbAlc as a
percentage of total hemoglobin provides a valuable means of assessing the long-term control
of glucose levels and also constitutes an important risk indicator for identifying Type 1 and
Type 2 diabetics.
 A sample of blood from a subject can be obtained in deposited in the sample well
15 of the disposable strip (Figure 2). The blood moves to the reaction chambers 11 and 19 via
the capillary channels 13. .The reaction chamber 11 can serve as the reference where the total
hemoglobin is measured. The reaction chamber 19 measures the HbAlc in the blood sample.
The ratio of HbAlc to the total hemoglobin provides the percentage of total hemoglobin that is
 Both of the reaction chambers contain a lysing agent. The lysing agent lyses the
whole blood samples thereby releasing the hemoglobin. The lysing agents are typically
surfactants, and preferably nonionic surfactants, such as for example TRITON™ X-100. The -
reaction chamber 19 additionally contains an antibody that can detect HbAlc. The antibody
can be a monoclonal or polyclonal antibody (Ab), or Ab fragment containing the antigen
binding site, or complementarity determining region (CDR), such as an F(ab')2 or Fab
fragment. The detectable moiety or label may be a radioactive, fluorescent or
chemiluminescent substance, or an enzyme. Alternatively, a labeled-second Ab which
recognizes the species specific Fc fragment of the first Ab may also be used. Further, the
antibody maybe labeled with a detectable label.
 In one aspect, the detectable label is a fluorescent molecule. Examples of
suitable fluorescent labels include fluorescein (FITC), 5,6-carboxymethyl fluorescein, Texas
red, nitrobenz-2-oxa-l,3-diazol-4-yl (NBD), coumarin, dansyl chloride, rhodamine, 4'-6-
diamidino-2-phenyliaodole (DAPI), and the cyanine dyes Cy3, Cy3.5, Cy5, Cy5.5 and Cy7.
Preferred fluorescent labels are fluorescein (5-carboxyfluorescein-N-hydroxysuccinhnide
ester), rhodamine (5,6-tetramethyl rhodamine), substituted rhodamine compounds, and the
cyanine dyes Cy3, Cy3.5, Cy5, Cy5.5 and Cy7. The absorption and emission maxima,
respectively, for these fluorophores are: FHC (490 nm; 520 nm), Cy3 (554 nm; 568 nm),
Cy3.5 (581 nm; 588 nm), Cy5 (652 nm: 672 nm), Cy5.5 (682 nm; 703 nm) and Cy7 (755 nm;
778 nm), thus allowing their simultaneous detection. The fluorescent labels can be obtained
from a variety of commercial sources, including Molecular Probes, Eugene, OR and Research
Organics, Cleveland, Ohio. As another alternative, in place of an added label, the bound
hemoglobin itself, due to its peroxidase-like properties, can generate a detectable signal. This
is accomplished by adding hydrogen peroxide, with or without addition of another substrate
[0O52] The cells in the two reaction wells are lysed. In the reference well 11, the total
amount of hemoglobin can be obtained by spectroscopic methods, such as measuring in the
UV region or the infrared region. The spectroscopic apparatus is known in the art and is
incorporated within the portable handheld machine. In particular, the measurements can be
made at 880 nm and at 580 nm. In the reaction well 19, the antibodies bind to HbAlc. In
order to ensure complete reaction, the liquids in the reaction wells can be magnetically stirred,
and optionally heated to a higher temperature.
 Upon completion of the reaction, a diluent can be added to the sample well 15.
The diluent causes the reactants in 19 to move through the capillary channels 9 towards the
capture zones 23. The capture zones can be antigens or other compounds that can specifically
bind to the antibody-HbAlc complex, any antibody, and the like or combinations thereof.
Thus, in one aspect, the first capture zone contains antigens that specifically bind to the
antibody-HbAlc complex, while the second capture zone contains antigens that bind to the
antibody and the antibody-HbAlc complex. The absorbent pad 5 absorbs all the liquid and
can help in drawing the liquid from the wells through the membranes.
 The amount of material in each capture zone can be determined by using the
detection systems described above. Calibrators or standards that are run with the assay
provide calibration (or standard) curves from which the %HbAlc in the sample is determined
using the measured signal. The sum of all the capture zones preferably equals the amount of
antibody that was placed in the reaction well, and can provide an internal control to
determining the percentage of reaction that has occurred. The concentration of the antibody-
HbAlc complex can be determined.from the reading of the first capture zone. The % HbAlc .
in the blood sample can be determined by dividing the concentration of the antibody-HbAlc
complex with the total concentration of hemoglobin.
 In another aspect, a reference membrane 7 (Figure 2) can be included in the
disposable strip. The reference membrane can have deposited upon it known concentrations
of the antigen-antibody-HbAlc complex, and antigen-antibody complex. The
spectrophotometric measurements form the reference membrane can be used to calibrate the
readings from the active membrane 25.
 While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to
a preferred embodiment and various alternate embodiments, it will be understood by persons
skilled in the relevant art that various changes in form and details can be made therein without
departing from the spirit and scope of the invention. All printed patents and publications
referred to in this application are hereby incorporated herein in their entirety by this reference.
1. A disposable strip comprising:
a first solid substrate comprising a sample collection well, a reference well, and a reaction
well, wherein the wells are in fluidic communication via a first capillary channel, and wherein the
reference well and the reaction well comprise a lysing agent;
a second solid substrate comprising holes wherein the first solid substrate and the second
solid substrate are joined and the holes communicate with the wells; and
a membrane having a capture zone wherein the membrane is connected to the reaction well
via a second capillary channel.
2. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, wherein the first substrate and the second
substrate are rectangular.
3. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, wherein the substrate is selected from the group
consisting of plastic, glass, nylon, metal, and combinations thereof.
4. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 3, wherein the substrate is plastic.
5. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, comprising a stir bar in the reaction well.
6. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, comprising an antibody deposited in the reaction
7. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 6, wherein the antibody is specific for HbAlc.
8 The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, wherein the lysing agent is a nonionic surfactant.
9. The disposable strip as claimed in claim 1, wherein the membrane is interposed between an
absorbent pad and the reaction well.
|Indian Patent Application Number||1147/KOLNP/2006|
|PG Journal Number||42/2011|
|Date of Filing||03-May-2006|
|Name of Patentee||MEC DYNAMICS CORP., a United States Corporation|
|Applicant Address||4713 DANIELLE PL.. SALIDA, CA 95368|
|PCT International Classification Number||G01N|
|PCT International Application Number||PCT/US2004/036031|
|PCT International Filing date||2004-10-29|