What is biochip?
A biochip is a miniaturized laboratory that can perform thousands of simultaneous biochemical reactions. It is a collection of micro test sites or microarrays that are arranged on the surface of a solid substrate and are designed to perform multiple tests at the same time for higher speed and throughput.
A biochip is like a computer chip, but instead of performing a multitude of mathematical operations per second, it performs biological reactions such as decoding genes and finding contaminants in a matter of seconds.
The heart of the biochip are its sensors, which can differ depending on the type of biochip. There are biochips for pH detection, oxygen detection, gene decoders and much more. The microarray, a two-dimensional biosensor grid, is the most important component of a biochip.
These sensors are arranged on a flat substrate, which can either be passive, which means that it does nothing, or active, which means that it assists the sensor in transmitting signals in the form of electronic or electromechanical devices.
Microarrays and biochips are mostly used for DNA analysis. But there are also biochips made for proteins, antibodies, and chemical compounds that are usually used in conjunction to run a series of tests on a single sample at the same time to create a patient profile.