A brief history of Lab-on-a-chip technologies
<a href="http://www More hints.micronit.com/blog/portfolio-item/lab-on-a-chip/” target=”_blank”>Lab-on-a-chip technologies are basically exactly what they sound like: they are micro-chips capable of processing one or more laboratory functions. They are especially useful when it comes to the analysis of very small quantities and volumes of certain chemical substances, especially fluids. Lab-on-a-chip technologies are a type of micro-technology, a field of both study and application that was developed from the mid-50s onwards. Halfway through the 90s, this type of technology got an extra boost because of its applications for genomics, the study of the human (and other types of) genome.
What are Lab-on-a-chip technologies for?
What are laboratories for? It depends on the type of laboratory, of course, but practically in different types laboratories all sorts of chemical analysis can be conducted. This proves very useful in a variety of fields, the most obvious is chemistry, but also environmental studies, pharmaceutical studies and medicine. And what do you think of NASA or ESA related space research? Just imagine what a lab-on-a-chip could do, researching the gasses, fluids and possibly even solids on extraterrestrial planets. In the not so distant future, it could even be possible to use lab-on-a-chip technologies to treat and even cure disease by providing local doctors with proper diagnostic tools.
What does the future hold?
Trying to predict the future of any field of study, technology or science usually ends up being either ridiculous or uncannily accurate. When it comes to lab-on-a-chip technologies, further developing these – for example by integrating nanotechnology – many more (bio)chemical processes can be observed, thus providing a further insight into the workings of cells and molecules. This can be highly valuable information for the understanding and curing of disease, as well as for the creation of stronger, healthier and more sustainable produce, for example.