Digital assay for rapid electronic quantification of clinical pathogens using DNA nanoballs.

Tayyab M, Barrett D, van Riel G, Liu S, Reinius B, Scharfe C, Griffin P, Steinmetz LM, Javanmard M, Pelechano V

Sci Adv 9 (36) eadi4997 [2023-09-08; online 2023-09-06]

Fast and accurate detection of nucleic acids is key for pathogen identification. Methods for DNA detection generally rely on fluorescent or colorimetric readout. The development of label-free assays decreases costs and test complexity. We present a novel method combining a one-pot isothermal generation of DNA nanoballs with their detection by electrical impedance. We modified loop-mediated isothermal amplification by using compaction oligonucleotides that self-assemble the amplified target into nanoballs. Next, we use capillary-driven flow to passively pass these nanoballs through a microfluidic impedance cytometer, thus enabling a fully compact system with no moving parts. The movement of individual nanoballs is detected by a change in impedance providing a quantized readout. This approach is flexible for the detection of DNA/RNA of numerous targets (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, HIV, β-lactamase gene, etc.), and we anticipate that its integration into a standalone device would provide an inexpensive (<$5), sensitive (10 target copies), and rapid test (<1 hour).

SciLifeLab Fellow

Vicent Pelechano

PubMed 37672583

DOI 10.1126/sciadv.adi4997

Crossref 10.1126/sciadv.adi4997

pmc: PMC10482329

Publications 9.5.0