Integrated Acoustic Separation, Enrichment, and Microchip Polymerase Chain Reaction Detection of Bacteria from Blood for Rapid Sepsis Diagnostics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper describes an integrated microsystem for rapid separation, enrichment, and detection of bacteria from blood, addressing the unmet clinical need for rapid sepsis diagnostics. The blood sample is first processed in an acoustophoresis chip, where red blood cells are focused to the center of the channel by an acoustic standing wave and sequentially removed. The bacteria-containing plasma proceeds to a glass capillary with a localized acoustic standing wave field where the bacteria are trapped onto suspended polystyrene particles. The trapped bacteria are subsequently washed while held in the acoustic trap and released into a polymer microchip containing dried polymerase chain reaction (PCR) reagents, followed by thermocycling for target sequence amplification. The entire process is completed in less than 2 h. Testing with Pseudomonas putida spiked into whole blood revealed a detection limit of 1000 bacteria/mL for this first-generation analysis system. In samples from septic patients, the system was able to detect Escherichia coli in half of the cases identified by blood culture. This indicates that the current system detects bacteria in patient samples in the upper part of the of clinically relevant bacteria concentration range and that a further developed acoustic sample preparation system may open the door for a new and faster automated method to diagnose sepsis.


External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Dongguk University, Seoul
  • University of Turku
  • Abacus Diagnostica Oy
  • Turku University Hospital
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Analytical Chemistry
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9403-9411
Number of pages9
JournalAnalytical Chemistry
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Oct 4
Publication categoryResearch

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