Press Releases

HKBU invents novel cell sensor for rapid and low-cost screening of drug-resistant bacteria

2021.9.29

Dr Ren Kangning (3rd from left) and his research team members Siu Sin-yung (1st from left), Wang Yisu (2nd from left) and Chan Chiu-wing (4th from left) who are PhD students of the Department of Chemistry.

The cell sensor with a barcode-like micro-channel structure comprises two main parts: a cell culture zone and a “barcode” cell sensor.


A research team led by Dr Ren Kangning, Associate Professor of the Department of Chemistry has developed a novel cell sensor with a barcode-like micro-channel structure that enables rapid and low-cost screening of drug-resistant bacteria. The invention could potentially be used on a large-scale in resource-limited situations such as frequent safety screenings of water, food and public facilities, as well as urgent surveys of massive samples during an infectious disease outbreak, particularly in developing countries. 

The test results of the “barcode” cell sensor were consistent with those conducted with conventional antimicrobial susceptibility testing (AST). The test can be completed in three hours, which is much faster than conventional AST that requires 16 to 24 hours for results. 

The research team has filed a patent application for the invention, and they plan to develop it into a portable AST instrument.

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