Researchers have developed an integrated microfluidic chip (BSI-AST chip) for rapid AST from positive blood cultures (PBCs). Using the chip, the process from bacteria extraction to getting AST results takes less than 3.5 hours, thus promising to be a powerful new tool in managing bloodstream infections.

In a proof-of-concept study, the BSI-AST chip demonstrated its effectiveness by conducting direct AST on artificial PBCs containing E. coli, testing against 18 antibiotics, with results in less than 3.5 hours.

Moreover, the integrated chip was applied to the diagnosis of clinical PBCs, showing a categorical agreement of 93.3 percent with standard clinical methods. The reliable and rapid AST results of the chip highlight its great potential in clinical diagnosis. The researchers achieved rapid extraction and enrichment of bacteria from PBCs by introducing a separator gel to the microfluidic chip for the first time. Centrifugal microfluidic enrichment technology also was central to the process. (Image credit: Liu Yang)

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