High-Precision Material Dosing Using Syringe Pumps

High-precision material dosing in a research experiment determines the success or failure of the research experiment. For example, in microfluidic experiments a syringe pump carries out material dosing; and the quality of the instrument (syringe pump) determines the dosing-precision of the fluid. High-quality syringe pumps have fixtures to facilitate a wide flow rate. Further, these pumps have programmable step-rate functionality, flow-rate measuring capability, push-pull, and oscillatory flow rate capability. In addition, some syringe pumps such as the Fusion 4000 Independent Channels Syringe Pump (see image below) provide fixtures to hold multiple syringes with different diameters.

For example, the high-quality dosing instruments have interchangeable syringes — with small and large channels– to widen the flow rate. The bigger syringe delivers a higher dosing flow rate, and the smaller syringe delivers a lower dosing flow rate. Experiments have shown that the smaller syringe pumps provide a better grove or control over the flow rate than the larger syringe pumps. Nevertheless, a high-quality syringe pump must be designed and manufactured to provide high precision material dosing despite a wide range of flow rates i.e. variable syringe diameters.

 

High-precision dosing instrument withdraws and infuses solutions with high precision and over a wide flow range. For example, a programmable syringe pump can deliver a wide range of flow rates in precise quantity for applications such as neuro-drug delivery systems, microfluidics, injections in a reactor, and mass-spec calibration. Furthermore, some experiments require operating two or more syringe channels to deliver fluids at different rates. For example, reactor experiments require an infusion of a saline and drug combination or a catalyst and co-catalyst reagent infusion at a separate flow rate.

High-Precision Dosing Applications

The use of high-precision dosing material is spread over many research fields. Including, experiments involving Lab-on-a-chip such as toxicology analyses or glucose monitoring, and experiments of advanced materials. Other research filed that use high-precision dosing material instruments include Biomaterials, Analytical Chemistry, Molecular, and cellular experiments, Food research, Bio-engineering, and Environmental science experiments. A brief discussion on high-precision dosing material and instrument is provided below.

Lab-on-a-chip experiments: Gelber and Bhargava (2015) demonstrated a method for creating multilayer or 3D microfluidics by casting a curable resin around a water-soluble, freestanding sacrificial mold. This demonstration used Chemyx Fusion 200 syringe pump.

Advanced Material Research: Tang et al. (2016) used the high-precision material dosing using Chemyx Fusion 100 syringe pump to develop a simple method for tuning the size of the microdroplets, which has found application in composites, catalysts, and microsystems.

Biomaterials: Tissue engineering uses advances in the field of tissue culture and material science. For example, regeneration of organ-specific tissue structures such as cardiac tissue requires tissue engineering. Orlova, Magome, Liu, Chen, and Agladze (2011) presented an in vitro system for cardiac tissue engineering based on cardiomyocytes cultured on electrospun polymethylglutarimide (PMGI) nanofibrous meshes. In the experiment, the researchers used a programmable syringe pump to infuse a prepared solution of polymethylglutarimide (PMGI) at 13% in cyclopentanone and tetrahydrofurfuryl alcohol. The solution was loaded in a 1ml syringe and delivered through a 25-gauge blunt-tip needle at a flow rate of 2.0 ml/h using the programmable syringe pump.

Analytical Chemistry: A high precision syringe pump was used to develop and describe a proof-of-concept recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA) assay with lateral flow readout capable of simultaneously detecting and differentiating DNA from any of the diarrhea-causing protozoa Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and Entamoeba ( Crannell et al., 2016 ). The syringe pump was set to a flow rate of 0.1mL/min to strip all the antibodies onto the nitrocellulose cards using a lateral flow reagent dispenser.

Conclusion

High precision dosing material instruments require precision engineering and high-quality manufacturing design, along with state-of-the-art fabrication methods. Based on the experiment’s complexity, an optimal high-precision dosing syringe pump should have a wide flow rate, programmable step-rate functionality, flow-rate measuring capability, push-pull, and oscillatory flow rate capability. High-precision material dosing has found application in various research fields such as biomedical, analytical chemistry, advanced material, and experiments involving lab-on-the-chip.

References:

  • Crannell, Z., Castellanos-Gonzalez, A., Nair, G., Mejia, R., White, A. C., & Richards-Kortum, R. (2016). Multiplexed recombinase polymerase amplification assay to detect intestinal protozoa. Analytical Chemistry, 88 (3), 1610-1616.
  • Gelber, M. K., & Bhargava, R. (2015). Monolithic multilayer microfluidics via sacrificial molding of 3D-printed isomalt. Lab on a Chip, 15 (7), 1736-1741.
  • Orlova, Y., Magome, N., Liu, L., Chen, Y., & Agladze, K. (2011). Electrospun nanofibers as a tool for architecture control in engineered cardiac tissue. Biomaterials, 32 (24), 5615-5624.

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