Digital PCR in micro-compartments

The effective detection of genetic alterations in the fields of cancerology, virology or prenatal diagnosis requires levels of sensitivity and specificity beyond the reach of conventional technologies. By carrying out the amplification of single DNA molecules in independent compartments, digital PCR (dPCR) in microfluidic systems makes it possible to overcome these limitations and to follow these markers in biological fluids. After a non-exhaustive presentation of the available technologies, this review will present their potential impact for biomedical applications, in particular in the care of patients with cancer.