Patents by Inventor Hou-Pu Chou

Hou-Pu Chou has filed for patents to protect the following inventions. This listing includes patent applications that are pending as well as patents that have already been granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

  • Publication number: 20090151422
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: June 18, 2009
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Patent number: 7494555
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2004
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2009
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake
  • Publication number: 20080289710
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: November 27, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzeiberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Patent number: 7452726
    Abstract: The invention provides systems, including apparatus, methods, and kits, for the microfluidic manipulation and/or detection of particles, such as cells and/or beads. The invention provides systems, including apparatus, methods, and kits, for the microfluidic manipulation and/or analysis of particles, such as cells, viruses, organelles, beads, and/or vesicles. The invention also provides microfluidic mechanisms for carrying out these manipulations and analyses. These mechanisms may enable controlled input, movement/positioning, retention/localization, treatment, measurement, release, and/or output of particles. Furthermore, these mechanisms may be combined in any suitable order and/or employed for any suitable number of times within a system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 11, 2003
    Date of Patent: November 18, 2008
    Assignee: Fluidigm Corporation
    Inventors: Hou-Pu Chou, Antoine Daridon, Kevin Farrell, Brian Fowler, Yish-Hann Liau, Ian D. Manger, Hany Ramez Nassef, William Throndset
  • Publication number: 20080277007
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 1, 2007
    Publication date: November 13, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Publication number: 20080277005
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 13, 2007
    Publication date: November 13, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Publication number: 20080274493
    Abstract: The present invention provides microfluidic devices and methods for using the same. In particular, microfluidic devices of the present invention are useful in conducting a variety of assays and high throughput screening. Microfluidic devices of the present invention include elastomeric components and comprise a main flow channel; a plurality of branch flow channels; a plurality of control channels; and a plurality of valves. Preferably, each of the valves comprises one of the control channels and an elastomeric segment that is deflectable into or retractable from the main or branch flow channel upon which the valve operates in response to an actuation force applied to the control channel.
    Type: Application
    Filed: May 27, 2008
    Publication date: November 6, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Stephen R. Quake, Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer
  • Publication number: 20080257437
    Abstract: Microfabricated fluidic devices of the present invention include switches that can be opened and closed to allow or block the flow of fluid through a channel in response to the pressure level in a gate of the switch. The microfabricated fluidic switches may be coupled together to perform logic functions and Boolean algebra, such as inverters, AND gates, NAND, gates, NOR gates, and OR gates. The logic gates may be coupled together to form flip-flops that latch signals. The present invention also includes microfabricated fluidic pressure multipliers that increase the pressure in a second chamber relative to a first chamber. Microfabricated fluidic devices of the present invention also include high or low pressure sources. A pressure source of the present includes a pump coupled to a reservoir through unidirectional valves. Microfabricated fluidic devices of the present invention may also include devices that perform analog functions such as switching regulator.
    Type: Application
    Filed: June 23, 2008
    Publication date: October 23, 2008
    Applicant: Fluidigm Corporation
    Inventors: David N. Fernandes, Hou-Pu Chou, Marc A. Unger
  • Publication number: 20080236669
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: October 2, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Publication number: 20080220216
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: September 11, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Publication number: 20080210321
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 2, 2007
    Publication date: September 4, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake
  • Publication number: 20080210319
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 1, 2007
    Publication date: September 4, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake
  • Publication number: 20080210320
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 2, 2007
    Publication date: September 4, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake
  • Publication number: 20080210322
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 2, 2007
    Publication date: September 4, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake
  • Publication number: 20080173365
    Abstract: A method of fabricating an elastomeric structure, comprising: forming a first elastomeric layer on top of a first micromachined mold, the first micromachined mold having a first raised protrusion which forms a first recess extending along a bottom surface of the first elastomeric layer; forming a second elastomeric layer on top of a second micromachined mold, the second micromachined mold having a second raised protrusion which forms a second recess extending along a bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer; bonding the bottom surface of the second elastomeric layer onto a top surface of the first elastomeric layer such that a control channel forms in the second recess between the first and second elastomeric layers; and positioning the first elastomeric layer on top of a planar substrate such that a flow channel forms in the first recess between the first elastomeric layer and the planar substrate.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2007
    Publication date: July 24, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer, Stephen R. Quake, Markus M. Enzelberger, Mark L. Adams, Carl L. Hansen
  • Patent number: 7392827
    Abstract: The present invention provides microfabricated fluidic systems and methods. Microfabricated fluidic devices of the present invention include switches that can be opened and closed to allow or block the flow of fluid through a channel in response to the pressure level in a gate of the switch. The microfabricated fluidic switches may be coupled together to perform logic functions and Boolean algebra, such as inverters, AND gates, NAND, gates, NOR gates, and OR gates. The logic gates may be coupled together to form flip-flops that latch signals. The present invention also includes microfabricated fluidic pressure multipliers that increase the pressure in a second chamber relative to a first chamber. Microfabricated fluidic devices of the present invention also include pressure sources. A pressure source of the present includes a pump coupled to a reservoir through unidirectional valves. The pressure source may be high pressure source or a low pressure source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 26, 2005
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2008
    Assignee: Fluidigm Corporation
    Inventors: David Fernandes, Hou-Pu Chou, Marc A. Unger
  • Patent number: 7378280
    Abstract: The present invention provides microfluidic devices and methods for using the same. In particular, microfluidic devices of the present invention are useful in conducting a variety of assays and high throughput screening. Microfluidic devices of the present invention include elastomeric components and comprise a main flow channel; a plurality of branch flow channels; a plurality of control channels; and a plurality of valves. Preferably, each of the valves comprises one of the control channels and an elastomeric segment that is deflectable into or retractable from the main or branch flow channel upon which the valve operates in response to an actuation force applied to the control channel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 16, 2001
    Date of Patent: May 27, 2008
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Stephen R. Quake, Marc A. Unger, Hou-Pu Chou, Todd A. Thorsen, Axel Scherer
  • Patent number: 7351376
    Abstract: The invention relates to a microfabricated device for the rapid detection of DNA, proteins or other molecules associated with a particular disease. The devices and methods of the invention can be used for the simultaneous diagnosis of multiple diseases by detecting molecules (e.g. amounts of molecules), such as polynucleotides (e.g., DNA) or proteins (e.g., antibodies), by measuring the signal of a detectable reporter associated with hybridized polynucleotides or antigen/antibody complex. In the microfabricated device according to the invention, detection of the presence of molecules (i.e., polynucleotides, proteins, or antigen/antibody complexes) are correlated to a hybridization signal from an optically-detectable (e.g. fluorescent) reporter associated with the bound molecules.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 28, 2000
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2008
    Assignee: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Stephen R. Quake, Hou-Pu Chou
  • Publication number: 20080050283
    Abstract: A microfluidic device comprises pumps, valves, and fluid oscillation dampers. In a device employed for sorting, an entity is flowed by the pump along a flow channel through a detection region to a junction. Based upon an identity of the entity determined in the detection region, a waste or collection valve located on opposite branches of the flow channel at the junction are actuated, thereby routing the entity to either a waste pool or a collection pool. A damper structure may be located between the pump and the junction. The damper reduces the amplitude of oscillation pressure in the flow channel due to operation of the pump, thereby lessening oscillation in velocity of the entity during sorting process. The microfluidic device may be formed in a block of elastomer material, with thin membranes of the elastomer material deflectable into the flow channel to provide pump or valve functionality.
    Type: Application
    Filed: August 21, 2007
    Publication date: February 28, 2008
    Applicant: California Institute of Technology
    Inventors: Hou-Pu Chou, Anne Fu, Stephen Quake
  • Patent number: 7312085
    Abstract: The invention provides systems, including apparatus, methods, and kits, for the microfluidic manipulation and/or detection of particles, such as cells and/or beads. The invention provides systems, including apparatus, methods, and kits, for the microfluidic manipulation and/or analysis of particles, such as cells, viruses, organelles, beads, and/or vesicles. The invention also provides microfluidic mechanisms for carrying out these manipulations and analyses. These mechanisms may enable controlled input, movement/positioning, retention/localization, treatment, measurement, release, and/or output of particles. Furthermore, these mechanisms may be combined in any suitable order and/or employed for any suitable number of times within a system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 1, 2003
    Date of Patent: December 25, 2007
    Assignee: Fluidigm Corporation
    Inventors: Hou-Pu Chou, Antoine Daridon, Kevin Farrell, Brian Fowler, Yish-Hann Liau, Ian D. Manger, Hany Ramez Nassef, William Throndset