Next generation microfluidic platforms for high-throughput protein biochemistry

DNA technologies such as cloning, DNA microarrays, and next generation sequencing have transformed the life sciences. Protein technologies on the other hand have not seen such explosive progress. This is mainly due to the inherent difficulty of working with proteins because of their manifold physical characteristics as opposed to the well behaved and well understood DNA polymer. Recent technological advancements have increased the throughput of protein biochemistry to levels where it is becoming of interest to systems biology. Here I review methods for high-throughput in situ synthesis and characterization of proteins and their integration with microfluidic devices. In the near future, the use of gene synthesis, microfluidic based protein synthesis and characterization will give rise to a resurgence of protein biochemistry in the current world of high-throughput genomics.

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