Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disorder that affects more than 300 million people worldwide. Asthma management would benefit from additional tools that establish biomarkers to identify phenotypes of asthma. We present a microfluidic solution that discriminates asthma from allergic rhinitis based on a patient's neutrophil chemotactic function. The handheld diagnostic device sorts neutrophils from whole blood within 5 min, and generates a gradient of chemoattractant in the microchannels by placing a lid with chemoattractant onto the base of the device. This technology was used in a clinical setting to assay 34 asthmatic (n = 23) and nonasthmatic, allergic rhinitis (n = 11) patients to establish domains for asthma diagnosis based on neutrophil chemotaxis. We determined that neutrophils from asthmatic patients migrate significantly more slowly toward the chemoattractant compared with nonasthmatic patients (P = 0.002). Analysis of the receiver operator characteristics of the patient data revealed that using a chemotaxis velocity of 1.55 μm/min for asthma yields a diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of 96% and 73%, respectively. This study identifies neutrophil chemotaxis velocity as a potential biomarker for asthma, andwe demonstrate a microfluidic technology that was used in a clinical setting to perform these measurements.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Apr 22 2014|
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