Puckdx™: TTP's platform for the automation of sample-to-answer diagnostic assays
Laboratory scientists typically use handheld or robotic pipettes to dispense, mix and elute samples. Most diagnostic systems perform similar fluid movements to prepare samples for diagnosis.
With this in mind, we developed a unique disposable robotic pipette system capable of performing almost any desired series of steps in the same way as they would be carried out at the lab bench.
Proof-of-principle test rigs allowed us to validate the design approach and specify the different modules of the system. For example, thanks to our know-how in thermal design, our current PCR module is capable of completing 30 cycles in 7 mins.
In 2018, we built an Alpha prototype that can extract and amplify DNA/RNA from a sample in <15 mins.
The modular platform can be customized for molecular and immunoassay tests as well as single-use automation and integration of other diagnostic assays in its low-cost, single-use, disposable cartridge.
The Puckdx™ cartridge has been designed for simplicity in use and manufacture: it contains all the reagents and is inherently robust as it only has one moving part and few critical dimensions, guaranteeing high manufacturing yields and market-leading low cost.
The Puckdx™ system offers a fully flexible solution for translating complex tests to a simple device that requires no operator expertise and is capable of providing fast or ultra-fast assay results. A customised system ready for clinical testing can be produced in 12–15 months.
We are now looking to combine Puckdx™ with LEX, TTP’s ultra-efficient thermal control technology, to obtain a complete solution for ultra-fast point-of-care diagnostics. This will potentially provide sample-to-answer molecular assays with 2 minute post-prep PCR time.
The approach to liquid handling in the disposable is key to enabling easy translation from a lab-based protocol to product, thus providing fast-track and low-cost assay/protocol expansion.