Sensors (Basel). 2021 Jun 6;21(11):3917. doi: 10.3390/s21113917.
Most existing commercial real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) instruments are bulky because they contain expensive fluorescent detection sensors or complex optical structures. In this paper, we propose an RT-PCR system using a camera module for smartphones that is an ultra small, high-performance and low-cost sensor for fluorescence detection. The proposed system provides stable DNA amplification. A quantitative analysis of fluorescence intensity changes shows the camera’s performance compared with that of commercial instruments. Changes in the performance between the experiments and the sets were also observed based on the threshold cycle values in a commercial RT-PCR system. The overall difference in the measured threshold cycles between the commercial system and the proposed camera was only 0.76 cycles, verifying the performance of the proposed system. The set calibration even reduced the difference to 0.41 cycles, which was less than the experimental variation in the commercial system, and there was no difference in performance.