The University of Southampton

Lab on a chip and Microfluidics

Lab on a chip systems, which perform laboratory operations on small scales using miniaturized devices promise more effective and inexpensive ways to analyse samples, giving rapid results and flexibility to operate at the point of need, for example out in the community.  We are developing these miniature sensor system for a wide range of medical and environmental applications. We have strong links with industry and collaborate widely with scientists with diverse backgrounds, including chemistry, biology, medicine, electronics and environmental sciences. Devices are typically fabricated in the state of the art clean rooms in the Southampton Nanofabrication Centre and tested in our world-class microfluidic laboratory.

We are developing rapid single cell analysis systems with an array of applications in the medical and environmental field. We are working with opthalomologists to increase the diagnosis speed of common eye infections. News Articles: The Times, The Express, The Daily Echo, NHS report.  In the environmental field, we are using micro-cytometer technology project is to improve early warning and event forecasting of harmful algal blooms (HABs) within and around shellfisheries by surveillance algal cells directly in seawater and at high rate, based on their unique fluorometric and electrical impedance profiles.


We are part of a consortium developing novel label-free cell sorting schemes based on particle morphology, deformability and dielectric properties combining experimental approaches with advanced modelling techniques. The study of morphology-sensitive sorting to learn about bacterial pathogenesis and to develop devices that provide improved diagnostics of bacterial disease and information about subpopulations to assist targeted treatment.