|SpinChip is for lack of a better term, a full blood workup laboratory intended to be taken out into the field by a doctor or a paramedic as standard equipment. It's intended use is to perform a blood diagnosis on the spot, rather than sending it to the hospital lab for processing and return in a few days.
Thus it lessens the strain on hospital facilities and greatly accelerates the availability of information to the health professional, at a time when our medical facilities are under more strain than ever before.
SpinChip is essentially the first commercially available biochip laboratory, and comes complete with a built-in centrifuge for improving the quality of results. In SpinChip, the blood sample is drawn directly from the patientís fingertip into small analytical chips that are placed in a microcentrifuge. Inside the chip, the fluids and dry components of the sample are separated, launching a number of reactions that take place in a series of tiny channels without any need for pumps or valves; i.e. high-level microfluidics. The results are read out optically within a couple of minutes.
Potentially, SpinChip can perform whatever blood analysis is required; in theory at least, every capability the main blood workup facility has, this system can duplicate en-situ. Only time will tell if it is indeed as good as sending to the main laboratory, just a great deal faster.
The company behind the device is a new startup, hoping to push SpinChip as its primary product. From now and until 2015, the technology will continue to be developed, and the Research Council of Norway has contributed to financing efforts via a User-driven Research-based Innovation (BIA) project that is currently being launched.