Blood flows through a network of small channels, about the size of a human hair, under conditions that mimic those of blood vessels in the body.

(Photo: Courtesy of Keith Neeves)

Typically when blood is tested it's put into a vial, where it sits still. But that’s a pretty unnatural environment for blood, which is constantly moving through the body.

So Keith Neeves, a researcher at the Colorado School of Mines, has developed a microchip that allows doctors to see how blood behaves while it’s flowing.  

The technology holds promise for helping doctors dramatically improve treatment for people with blood disorders, which can cause heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure, miscarriage and other serious and potentially fatal problems.

Neeves spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.