Research and Teaching Interests
My research is focused on developing new technology for ultrasmall volume biological fluids and tissue analysis. New technologies will allow the full chemical and bioactive analysis of incredibly small samples—on the order of a few nanoliters or a cube about one-tenth the diameter of a human hair. The idea of these ultrasmall volume biological assays opens the door to a wide variety of revolutionary applications, including inexpensive disposable clinical assays chips, implantable micro health monitoring systems, millions of parallel assays from a single microscopic sample (proteomic and genomic application—leading to personalized medical care), the ability to chemically map tissues at high spatial resolution, non-invasive sampling and local disease treatment among other interesting applications. To develop and apply these new technologies, our group’s research interests span chemistry, physics, biochemistry, engineering, medical science and biology. Much of the details of accomplishing our tasks lie in fundamental issues including surface chemistry, materials design, micro- and nanofluidics, dynamic interfacial physics & chemistry, and microfluidic/microelectronic chip design and fabrication.
One long-term goal is provide truly predictive pattern recognition for early disease detection for individuals, and by definition, define various states of wellness. The earliest a disease can be detected is when the wellness state begins to falter. All of the bioanalytical technical advances can be related to developing the ability to map the detailed chemical patterns of an active biological system. This map includes the idea of pattern recognition in the sense of varying concentrations of ‘markers’ for specific disease states and pattern recognition of those concentrations over time. One of the biggest challenges in proposing to address early disease detection is defining quantitatively the baseline or normal fluctuations of the operating biological system. A clearly ideal starting point for developing these capabilities is the observation of established chemical markers of stress. Arguable, a system under stress is the first step away from wellness and toward disease.
Our current projects focus on enabling the accurate and precise measurement of important bio-particles and molecules, which is a very difficult task. The huge variety and subtle differences between bio-particles and molecules presents a massive challenge to isolate and concentrate the important materials away from the unimportant. We have pioneered a new separation scheme enabled by the electronics industry fabrication strategies, resulting in micro and nanofluidics, where unheard of control of electric and flow fields can uniquely capture targets. We have demonstrated this on human and pathogen cells, along with a variety of important proteins.
"Manipulation and Capture of Aß Amyloid Fibrils and Monomers by DC Insulator Gradient Dielectrophoresis (DC-iGDEP), ," Sarah J. R. Staton, Paul V. Jones, Ginger Ku, S. Douglass Gilman, Indu Kheterpal, and Mark A. Hayes* , Analyst 136 DOI:10.1039/C2AN35138B (2012)
"Exploring the feasibility of bioaerosol analysis as a novel fingerprinting technique. ," Josemar A. Castillo, Sarah J. R. Staton, Thomas J. Taylor, Pierre Herckes, Mark A. Hayes* , Anal. Bioanal. 403(1) 15-26 (2012)
"Using Electrophoretic Exclusion to Manipulate Small Molecules and Particles on a Microdevice. ," Stacy M. Kenyon, Noah G. Weiss, & Mark A. Hayes , Electrophoresis 33 1227-1235 (2012)
"Blood cell capture in a gradient dielectrophoretic microchannel. ," Paul V. Jones, Sarah J. R. Staton, and Mark A. Hayes*, Anal. Bioanal. 401 2103-2111 (2011)
"Investigation of Electrophoretic Exclusion Method for the Concentration and Differentiation of Proteins," Meighan, MM; Vasquez, J ; Dziubcynski, L; Hews, S & Mark A. Hayes, Analytical Chemistry 83 368-373 (2011)