Microfabricated Deposition Tools for Creating NanoArrays

Period of Performance: 09/01/2007 - 08/31/2009


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Bioforce Nanosciences, Inc.
Ames, IA 50010
Principal Investigator

Research Topics


DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The goal of this SBIR Phase II proposal is to continue and expand the development of microfabricated surface patterning tools (SPTs) for the construction of ultra miniaturized biomaterial arrays (nanoarrays). SPTs can be configured as either pre-loaded molecular ink cartridges analogous to those used in desktop printers, or as an ultraminiaturized version of the pin tool print head in a conventional microarr ayer. SPTs are a consumable component of an instrument we have constructed called NanoArrayer (with support from NIH R44 EB00316). They will also be configured to be compatible with commercial atomic force microscopes. In the proposed Phase II program we will focus on increasing the number of individual spots c reated in a single print cycle while maintaining a high degree of r eproducibility and minimal sample cross contamination. We will optimize linear array (1-D) SPTs containing 10 individually loaded cantilevers and then expand in a second dimension, culminating i n a planar 2-D print head for simultaneous printing of up to 100 nanoarray spots, each capable of containing a unique biomolecular species. E mphasis will be given to controlling sample spil lover (cross-contamination), spot size, printing repr oducibility and SPT-surface alignment. We will also begin to explore forward looking development in the areas of localized magnetic field cantilever control, alternative (non-microcantilever) SPT designs and soft polymer print substrates that can be used for microfluidics and for nanoar ray cloning via contact printing. At the end of the Phase II program we will have an ensemble of STP-based solutions for a variety of ultramicro- and nanoarray applications. Our commer cialization plan will continue throughout the Phase II development program with introduction of improved SPTs as they emerge from the R&D process.