Keynote talk



Low-cost MEMS for Applications in Medical Technology

Professor Göran Stemme
Microsystems Technology Lab
Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)
Stockholm, Sweden

Date: 04.07.2008
Time: 14:15
Location: Building 101 - lecture hall
The talk will give an in-depth description of two recent projects at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) which utilize MEMS and microsystem technology for realization of components intended for specific applications in medical technology and diagnostic instrumentation.

By novel use of the DRIE fabrication technology we have developed side-opened out-of-plane silicon microneedles intended for use in transdermal drug delivery applications. The side opening reduces clogging probability during penetration into the skin and increases the up-take area of the liquid in the tissue. These microneedles offer about 200µm deep and pain-free skin penetration. We have been able to combine the microneedle chip with an electrically and heat controlled liquid actuator device where expandable microspheres are used to push doses of drug liquids into the skin. The entire unit is made of low cost materials in the form of a square one cm-sized patch. The patch was successfully tested in vivo by insulin administration to diabetic rats. Additionally, insertion and liquid injection was verified on human skin. The study shows the feasibility of a patch-like system with on-board liquid storage and dispensing capability. The proposed device represents a first step towards painless and convenient administration of macromolecular drugs such as insulin or vaccines.

Finally, the design, fabrication and evaluation of an integrated miniaturized Quartz Crystal Microbalance (QCM) based “electronic nose” microsystem for detection of narcotics is described. The work integrates a novel environment-to-chip sample interface with the sensor element. The choice of multifunctional materials and the geometric features of a four-component microsystem allow a functional integration of a QCM crystal, electrical contacts, fluidic contacts and a sample interface in a single system with minimal assembly effort, a potential for low-cost manufacturing, and a few orders of magnitude reduced in system size (12*12*4 mm3) and weight compared to commercially available instruments. The sensor chip was successfully used it for the detection of 200 ng of narcotics sample.


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