Fundamentals of BioMEMS and Medical Devices

Sensor Review

ISSN: 0260-2288

Article publication date: 27 June 2008


Sántha, H. (2008), "Fundamentals of BioMEMS and Medical Devices", Sensor Review, Vol. 28 No. 3.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Fundamentals of BioMEMS and Medical Devices

Fundamentals of BioMEMS and Medical Devices

Article Type: Book review From: Sensor Review, Volume 28, Issue 3

Steven S. SalitermanSPIE,19 January 2006608 p.ISBN 978-0-8194-5977-0$107.00

This work is an introduction to this really multidisciplinary technology and the current state of micromedical devices in use today. The first text of its kind dedicated to bioMEMS training, suitable for a single-semester course for senior- and graduate-level students, or as an introduction to others interested or already working in the field.

The book is comprised of some 610 pages and presents a comprehensive and well-organised compilation of 15 chapters:

  1. 1.

    Introduction to BioMEMS.

  2. 2.

    Silicon microfabrication.

  3. 3.

    “Soft” fabrication techniques.

  4. 4.

    Polymer materials.

  5. 5.

    Microfluidic principles.

  6. 6.

    Sensor principles and microsensors.

  7. 7.

    Microactuators and drug delivery.

  8. 8.

    Clinical laboratory medicine.

  9. 9.

    Micro-total-analysis systems.

  10. 10.

    Detection and measurement methods.

  11. 11.

    Genomics and DNA microarrays.

  12. 12.

    Proteomics and protein microarrays.

  13. 13.

    Emerging BioMEMS technology.

  14. 14.

    Packaging, power, data, and RF safety.

  15. 15.

    Biocompatibility, FDA, and ISO 10993.

Throughout the book, the material is well presented, supported with high-quality text, figures, solutions, comparisons, and greyscale photos, etc. At the beginning of the book, a detailed 13-page listing of symbols, units and acronyms can be found, covering both medical and technological terminology. At the end of the book, a 15-page index and a 35-page glossary are included. Appendix A (Common BioMEMS polymers) describes briefly 26 polymer materials, their chemical structures and typical medical or bioMEMS applications. Appendix B discusses typical medical imaging methods and devices very briefly in ten pages, which was a reasonable choice, since medical imaging, though, a rapidly advancing and extensively used part of medical devices, falls outside the core topic. Appendix C is the FDA blue book memorandum No. G95-1.

The author is a medical doctor who works as a clinician while in the same time teaches bioMEMS and physiology and has research activities moreover a patent application related to medical technology as well. The relevant topics to be touched in such a comprehensive work are collected and organised in the spirit of practicality, and apparently, the author conducted a thorough and wide-spectrum literature search that made it possible to include state-of-the-art examples, photos and solutions in all chapters. The material is grouped in a very logical way and describes indeed all the significant topics related to bioMEMS and medical microdevices. The internal structuring of chapters is coherent and precise. In the introductory paragraphs, the necessary definitions are explained first and usually, the most relevant information sources of more detailed understanding of the topic suggested for further reading are mentioned too.

Although, the work has a technological character, the descriptions are adequate and unobjectionable from the clinicians’ point of view too. It must be noted that a whole chapter discusses the topic of clinical laboratory medicine.

The book is written to appeal to the diversity of training and background of its readers, and includes introductory material, advanced concepts, and current research. The foundations for conceiving, designing and applying bioMEMS and medical microdevices at both the research and clinical level are addressed. The book can be highly recommended to Sensor Review readers, especially those who are interested in teaching of the topic, since each chapter is closed with ca. 10-20 “Review questions”. Instructors at educational institutions may inquire about power point presentations by sending an e-mail to the author, who has prepared about 600 slides divided into 18 lectures, suitable as an introductory course when used in conjunction with the book.

To summarise, this book is a balanced, readable and accurate collection of issues and published RTD data related to bioMEMS and medical microdevices. Even if, a few solutions, methods included are not described in full detail, in general, this work explains the main theoretical principles and provides a solid introduction to the whole field of bioMEMS and medical microdevices, without overwhelming readers that are novices in selected areas of the field. At the end of every chapter, ideas for “Suggested reading” which are grouped according to technical areas touched upon in the chapter, and a detailed list of references in alphabetical order of the first authors helps those who need in-depth information lacking from the text of the chapter.

Hunor SánthaSensor Laboratory, Department of Electronics Technology, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary