Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) play a pivotal role in regulating the composition of the extracellular matrix and have a critical role in vascular disease, cancer progression, and bone disorders. This paper describes the design and fabrication of a microdevice as a new platform for highly sensitive MMP-9 detection. In this sensing platform, fluorescein isocyanate (FITC)-labeled MMP-9 specific peptides were covalently immobilized on an electrospun nanofiber matrix to utilize an enzymatic cleavage strategy. Prior to peptide immobilization, the nanofiber matrix was incorporated into hydrogel micropatterns for easy size control and handling of the nanofiber matrix. The resultant hydrogel-framed nanofiber matrix immobilizing the peptides was inserted into microfluidic devices consisting of reaction chambers and detection zones. The immobilized peptides were reacted with the MMP-9-containing solution in a reaction chamber, which resulted in the cleavage of the FITC-containing peptide fragments and subsequently generated fluorescent flow at the detection zone. As higher concentrations of the MMP-9 solution were introduced or larger peptide-immobilizing nanofiber areas were used, more peptides were cleaved, and a stronger fluorescence signal was observed. Due to the huge surface area of the nanofiber and small dimensions of the microsystem, a faster response time (30 min) and lower detection limit (10 pM) could be achieved in this study. The hydrogel-framed nanofiber matrix is disposable and can be replaced with new ones immobilizing either the same or different biomolecules for various bioassays, while the microfluidic system can be continuously reused.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Analytical Chemistry