Next Article in Journal
Participatory Research to Design a Novel Telehealth System to Support the Night-Time Needs of People with Dementia: NOCTURNAL
Next Article in Special Issue
Embedded Fragments from U.S. Military Personnel—Chemical Analysis and Potential Health Implications
Previous Article in Journal
Projected Heat-Related Mortality in the U.S. Urban Northeast
Previous Article in Special Issue
Lead Ions Encapsulated in Liposomes and Their Effect on Staphylococcus aureus
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(12), 6748-6763; doi:10.3390/ijerph10126748

A Microfluidic Device for Continuous Sensing of Systemic Acute Toxicants in Drinking Water

Department of Micro and Nano Systems Technology (IMST), Faculty of Technology and Maritime Sciences (TekMar), Vestfold University College (HiVE), Tønsberg N3103, Norway
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 September 2013 / Revised: 18 November 2013 / Accepted: 27 November 2013 / Published: 3 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances on Environmental and Toxicologic Pathology)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1615 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]   |  


A bioluminescent-cell-based microfluidic device for sensing toxicants in drinking water was designed and fabricated. The system employed Vibrio fischeri cells as broad-spectrum sensors to monitor potential systemic cell toxicants in water, such as heavy metal ions and phenol. Specifically, the chip was designed for continuous detection. The chip design included two counter-flow micromixers, a T-junction droplet generator and six spiral microchannels. The cell suspension and water sample were introduced into the micromixers and dispersed into droplets in the air flow. This guaranteed sufficient oxygen supply for the cell sensors. Copper (Cu2+), zinc (Zn2+), potassium dichromate and 3,5-dichlorophenol were selected as typical toxicants to validate the sensing system. Preliminary tests verified that the system was an effective screening tool for acute toxicants although it could not recognize or quantify specific toxicants. A distinct non-linear relationship was observed between the zinc ion concentration and the Relative Luminescence Units (RLU) obtained during testing. Thus, the concentration of simple toxic chemicals in water can be roughly estimated by this system. The proposed device shows great promise for an early warning system for water safety.
Keywords: microfluidic device; Vibrio fischeri; cell toxicity; bioluminescence; counter-flow micromixer microfluidic device; Vibrio fischeri; cell toxicity; bioluminescence; counter-flow micromixer

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Zhao, X.; Dong, T. A Microfluidic Device for Continuous Sensing of Systemic Acute Toxicants in Drinking Water. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10, 6748-6763.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top