This week in techniques



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Scalable, automated microfluidic western blotting

A scalable, automated microfluidics system could help improve the efficiency of western blots. The automated system is compatible with 48-blot microchips and completes western blots in 10-60 minutes while consuming 1,000-fold less antibody than conventional western blots. As proof of concept, the system measured levels of NF-kB in cell lysates and detected HIV proteins in samples. Researchers did not disclose next steps, which could include using the system to detect and quantify levels of disease-linked proteins in clinical samples.

SciBX 5(49); doi:10.1038/scibx.2012.1295
Published online Dec. 20, 2012

Patent and licensing undisclosed

Hughes, A.J. & Herr, A.E. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA; published online Dec. 5, 2012;
Contact: Amy E. Herr, University of California, Berkeley, Calif.