Hollow microneedle devices as a technology for interstitial fluid extraction show promise for the minimally invasive point-of-care detection of analytes. Despite increasing efforts toward on-patch diagnostics, the use of hollow microneedles has been limited due to the complexity caused by integrating hollow microneedles with established point-of-care diagnostic techniques. Herein, a 3D printing method is utilized, to provide low-cost manufacturing of custom-designed hollow microneedle devices, allowing for easy integration with lateral flow assays for rapid and blood-free diagnostics. Microneedle surface modification through PEGylation results in prolonged and enhanced hydrophilicity, enabling passive uptake of small volume samples (≈22.5 µL) and an enhanced shelf life. The hollow microneedle devices are deemed non-cytotoxic to cell types found within the skin following short-term and prolonged exposure in accordance with ISO10993. Furthermore, the devices demonstrate high mechanical strength and successfully penetrate porcine skin grafts without damaging the surrounding skin morphology. This work also demonstrates for the first time the use of hollow microneedles for the simultaneous detection, at clinically relevant concentrations, of C-reactive protein (LoD = 10 µg mL−1) and procalcitonin (LoD = 1 ng mL−1), through porcine skin, ultimately demonstrating the beneficial use of manufactured 3D-printed hollow microneedles towards low-cost blood-free diagnostics of inflammation markers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2300259
Number of pages12
JournalAdvanced Materials Technologies
Early online date4 May 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 May 2023


  • 3D printing
  • biocompatibility
  • hollow microneedles
  • inflammation markers
  • rapid diagnostics
  • skin penetration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


Dive into the research topics of '3D-Printed Hollow Microneedle-Lateral Flow Devices for Rapid Blood-Free Detection of C-Reactive Protein and Procalcitonin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this