Alyson Drew

Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Hyun Kwon


Prostate cancer is commonly screened in the bloodstream by detection of excess PSA, prostate-specific antigen which is a protein in the prostate produces in large quantities when cancerous tumors are present. In order to facilitate inexpensive and disposable detection, diagnostic tools have begun to be created out of paper and wax which wick solutions through channels based on their hydrophobicity. George M. Whitesides, who pioneered the majority of this work, designed a paper-based LFD, lateral flow device, effective for detecting liver function which we are modifying to detect PSA. In this paper, we designed an oPAD, origami paper analytical device, specific to PSA using GNPs, gold nanoparticles, which provide a colorimetric, qualitative, inexpensive, efficient, and disposable design to detect prostate cancer through the bloodstream. Our device separates the sample laterally to prevent back-mixing and vertically to enable addition of novel particles. The design was optimized for channel thickness, size, proper heating, type of paper involved, and amount of sample solution needed. We are currently concept-testing of PSA qualitative detection via sandwich assay to target detection levels <100ng/mL, but we hope to design a device that can be easily modified to detect many other biomarkers for disease.

Subject Area

Prostate--Cancer--Diagnosis., Prostate-specific antigen.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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