Dr. Wei Liao


Chief Executive Officer & Founder, Ezlife Bio Inc, China

Website: http://ezlife.bio/

Presentation Title: EFIRM РEnabling the detection of cfDNA, microRNA and Exosome in Saliva

Salivary constituents such as cell-free DNA (cfDNA), microRNA, and exosomes offer great promise as correlates for a wide range of diseases. Their native concentration in the salivary matrix, however, presents difficulties to researchers. Researchers typically must perform complex enrichment procedures such as RT-qPCR or ultracentrifugation in order to achieve a detectable amount of target.

Herein we present the EFIRM (Electric Field Induced Release and Measurement) platform, an electrochemical biosensor based technique that allows a rapid method for performing measurement of cfDNA, microRNA, and exosomal targets without requiring traditional labor intensive enrichment strategies. The EFIRM technique combines surface-immobilized probes with an electric-field driven hybridization strategy that can allow for highly specific and targeted detection of markers directly from a specimen that has not been purified with traditional extraction procedures.

Studies of EFIRM for detecting cfDNA in saliva demonstrate near performance concordance to tissue-based biopsy for detecting key treatable EGFR lung cancer mutations L858R, Exon19 Deletion, and T790M, along with the ability to detect <100 bp cfDNA fragments that are undetectable by traditional ddPCR. Evaluations of microRNA detection using the EFIRM platform demonstrate femtomolar-level sensitivity detection in complex matrices, with the ability to achieve  high correlation with existing microRNA measurement techniques using standards from the United States National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST). Preliminary data evaluating EFIRM on detecting exosomal targets were also highly promising, showing the ability of EFIRM to be used effectively for detecting circulating tumor DNA localized inside exosomes.

This lecture overviews the EFIRM method and it’s application to novel edge basic-science and translational research. Highlights will be made of the aforementioned results in ctDNA, microRNA, and exosome targets and discussion will be made of potential future applications.