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Journal of Sensors
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 2385267, 9 pages
Review Article

Microfluidic Sample Preparation Methods for the Analysis of Milk Contaminants

Centre for Materials and Microsystems, Fondazione Bruno Kessler, 38123 Trento, Italy

Received 14 August 2015; Accepted 5 November 2015

Academic Editor: Kourosh Kalantar-Zadeh

Copyright © 2016 Andrea Adami et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In systems for food analysis, one of the major challenges is related to the quantification of specific species into the complex chemical and physical composition of foods, that is, the effect of “matrix”; the sample preparation is often the key to a successful application of biosensors to real measurements but little attention is traditionally paid to such aspects in sensor research. In this critical review, we discuss several microfluidic concepts that can play a significant role in sample preparation, highlighting the importance of sample preparation for efficient detection of food contamination. As a case study, we focus on the challenges related to the detection of aflatoxin in milk and we evaluate possible approaches based on inertial microfluidics, electrophoresis, and acoustic separation, compared with traditional laboratory and industrial methods for phase separation as a baseline of thrust and well-established techniques.