Lab-on-a-CD eyed for space

Nov. 13, 2003 — NASA has teamed with Nanogen Inc. and two California universities to develop a prototype “lab-on-a-CD” to conduct biological tests aboard the International Space Station and eventually seek life beyond Earth, according to a news release.


A NASA Ames Research Center scientist said the microfluidic technology embedded on the disk can test thousands of biological samples rapidly and automatically. Such a system could be useful for DNA analysis on the Space Station.


The next step is to develop more tests to determine how well the device works, and eventually add a multidisk changer to test several CDs at once. A version of the instrument could be spun off for clinical use in hospitals, doctors’ offices and laboratories, the release said.


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