Trajan Scientific and Medical’s (Trajan) highly successful ASTech1 program has resulted in the commercial development of several new syringe technologies. The program was developed in collaboration with the University of Tasmania where the objective was to develop a range of “lab-in-a-syringe” applications, expanding on Trajan’s expertise in precision manufacturing of their industry leading analytical syringe portfolio.
Two of the new applications were published back-to-back on the 30th and 31st August 2020 – Coates2 and colleagues described the development of a modular and cost-effective portable capillary chromatography system based on Trajan’s precision stepper motor-driven syringe pumps featuring interchangeable glass syringes of different volumes. The system has utility in pharmaceutical reaction monitoring given its small portable design enabling co-location with the reactor.
Mikahil3 and colleagues, on the other hand, developed an electrokinetic extraction (EkE) syringe where they demonstrated the “in‐syringe” removal of serum proteins prior to analysis by mass spectrometry. The method depends on the migration of charged proteins in serum away from neutral analytes in an electric field, applied utilizing the Trajan analytical syringe’s metallic plunger and needle as electrodes. The proposed concept was demonstrated by measuring active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) in serum.
Most recently in March 2021, Tehranirokh4 and colleagues have demonstrated a novel extraction “micromixer” device for miniaturizing and automating the liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) process; a common method for extracting and measuring pollutants in wastewater samples. The team co-developed an entirely new bi-modal mechanism where the plunger of the device can both aspirate and dispense as well as mix the different liquids used in the process. The micromixer is ideal for simple, effective and efficient LLE using only a fraction of the harmful organic solvents typically used for the manual LLE method. One of the most valuable attributes of the micromixer is that it enables automation of the whole process, improving lab efficiency for wastewater as well as other environmental monitoring measurements.
“Trajan’s ASTech program has been a very successful collaboration initiative with the Australian research sector and to see the outcomes of these research projects reach their commercial potential is very encouraging and a tangible example of collaborative research outcomes between industry and academia” said Dr Andrew Gooley, Chief Scientific Officer, Trajan Scientific and Medical.
Trajan is driven to deliver impact to human well-being. Enabling analytical workflows to be more reliable, robust and cost effective is core to Trajan’s strategy. The miniaturized and automation of applications like LLE is just one embodiment of our “lab-in-a-syringe” strategy delivering our vision in the fields such as environmental monitoring of pollutants.
Photo: A close up of the LLE mixer tool on the Trajan Automation autosampler.
1ASTech – Australian Research Council’s Industrial Transformation and Training Centre for Portable Analytical Separation Technology – see www.astech.org.au
2Modular, cost-effective, and portable capillary gradient liquid chromatography system for on-site analysis. Coates L.J et al; J. Chromatogr A. 2020; 1626: 461374.
3In‐Syringe Electrokinetic Protein Removal from Biological Samples prior to Electrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry. Mikhail I.E. et al; Angewandte Chemie; 2020; 59: 23162.
4Automated liquid-liquid extraction of organic compounds from aqueous samples using a multifunction autosampler syringe. Tehranirokh et al; J. Chromatogr A. 2021; 1642: 462032