Traumatic brain injury (TBI) consider as a "silent epidemic," is a worldwide, common but disregarded disease. Only in the USA every year almost one and a half million people have been affected by TBI, which causes serious disabilities and frequently leads to death. It cost is estimated at 4 billion dollars annually and its the cause of socio-economic issues as it is touching mostly young and professionally active people. There is an evident lack of a proper method suitable for TBI diagnosis especially in case of the mild type known as a concussion. Therefore, a fast, small and handheld detection system is required to accelerate the patient diagnosis and avoid severe complications. In this context, the design of novel pump-free electrochemical paper-based analytic device for sensitive and reproducible traumatic brain injury detection at serum and cerebrospinal fluid is proposed in this project. Paper-based screen-printed biosensors, modified with conductive nanostructures like carbon and metal nanoparticles, as well as, polymer dendrimers, will be fabricated using a precise ink-jet method. This approach allows decreasing the cost and significantly simplifies the invention. After this step, receptors compatible with TBI biomarkers will be immobilized on surface sensor for ensure the high specificity and reproducibility. Following the fabrication and characterization steps by spectroscopic and microscopic methods, the proposed electrode architectures will be applied for the single or multi-markers electrochemical detection in the same device. We hope to achieve a reliable device for detecting the severity of TBI for on-site patient diagnostics in every environment. It will increase the quality of many people life and bring a positive socio-economic effect.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: