The electronic taste chip (ETC) assay system is a lab-on-a-chip technology that offers a microchip platform on which bead-based immunoassays are performed. Each bead within the array serves as its own independent self-contained "microreactor" system, with its selectivity determined by the specificity of the antibody that it hosts. The bead-loaded chip is sandwiched between two optically transparent polymethylmethacrylate inserts, packaged within a metal casing described here as the "flow cell." This flow cell allows for delivery of sample and detecting reagents to the microchip and the associated beads. Images of fluorescent beads are captured with a digital video chip and analyzed to facilitate detection and, ultimately, quantitation of analytes in complex fluids. This chapter describes the application of the ETC system for the detection and measurement of interleukin (IL)-6.
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