H2020-EU.2.1.1. - INDUSTRIAL LEADERSHIP - Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies - Information and Communication Technologies (ICT)

BIOCDx's objectives

The project aims to develop a miniaturized, ultra-sensitive and reliable Point-of-Care (PoC) device with disposable microfluidic cartridge for the monitoring of cancer biomarkers in body fluids and specifically in whole blood samples. The proposed PoC device will aid primary tumor and metastases detection, as well as monitoring of drug efficacy as a companion diagnostic, with main focus in three cancer types: breast cancer, hormone-independent prostate cancer and melanoma. It will provide clinicians, caretakers and patients with a more sensitive, robust and selective tool for improved clinical decisions through the early and fast diagnosis of the disease, as well as monitoring of therapeutic response, reducing the cost of the healthcare system. Besides the obvious health benefit for the patient, it will contribute to the sustainability of the European health care system by decreasing the expenditure associated with pharmaceutical treatments and with hospitalization.

Objective 1: Detection of novel TWIST1-regulated proteins as biomarkers for reliable, accurate, early diagnosis of cancer disease and therapeutics response monitoring.

Objective 2: Develop a new generation of integrated optical sensing circuits relying on Mach-Zehnder interferometers for ultra-low LOD (<10-8 RIU), sensor miniaturization and power reduction.

Objective 3: Design and develop a biochemical recognition approach based on the use of nanoparticles (nano-biochemical platform) for amplifying the sensing optical signal.

Objective 4: Design and develop a disposable, miniaturized, low-cost microfluidics cartridge enabling the selection and transfer of few hundreds of μl whole blood samples to the detection unit.

Objective 5: Define a system-in-package methodology for integration of heterogeneous platforms and components, and develop an ultra-compact, fully functional, miniaturized and easy-to-use sensing device for early cancer screening and drug monitoring.

Objective 6: Preclinical and clinical evaluation of the sensor performance on human blood samples and validation of the potential for fast, reliable, ultra-sensitive (fM) detection of the identified marker levels.