Microfluidics and Nanofluidics

, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 21–36

The microscopy cell (MicCell), a versatile modular flowthrough system for cell biology, biomaterial research, and nanotechnology

  • F. -U. Gast
  • P. S. Dittrich
  • P. Schwille
  • M. Weigel
  • M. Mertig
  • J. Opitz
  • U. Queitsch
  • S. Diez
  • B. Lincoln
  • F. Wottawah
  • S. Schinkinger
  • J. Guck
  • J. Käs
  • J. Smolinski
  • K. Salchert
  • C. Werner
  • C. Duschl
  • M. S. Jäger
  • K. Uhlig
  • P. Geggier
  • S. Howitz
Research Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10404-005-0047-6

Cite this article as:
Gast, F.U., Dittrich, P.S., Schwille, P. et al. Microfluid Nanofluid (2006) 2: 21. doi:10.1007/s10404-005-0047-6

Abstract

We describe a novel microfluidic perfusion system for high-resolution microscopes. Its modular design allows pre-coating of the coverslip surface with reagents, biomolecules, or cells. A poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) layer is cast in a special molding station, using masters made by photolithography and dry etching of silicon or by photoresist patterning on glass or silicon. This channel system can be reused while the coverslip is exchanged between experiments. As normal fluidic connectors are used, the link to external, computer-programmable syringe pumps is standardized and various fluidic channel networks can be used in the same setup. The system can house hydrogel microvalves and microelectrodes close to the imaging area to control the influx of reaction partners. We present a range of applications, including single-molecule analysis by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS), manipulation of single molecules for nanostructuring by hydrodynamic flow fields or the action of motor proteins, generation of concentration gradients, trapping and stretching of live cells using optical fibers precisely mounted in the PDMS layer, and the integration of microelectrodes for actuation and sensing.

Keywords

Lab-on-chipPDMS microchannelMicroscopyHydrogel valveMicroelectrodes

Abbreviations

AC/DC

Alternating current/direct current

AMPPNP

Adenosine 5′-(β,γ-imido)triphosphate

ASE

Advanced silicon etching

ATP

Adenosine 5′-triphosphate

cDNA

Complementary (or copy) DNA

DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid

ECM

Extracellular matrix

FCS

Fluorescence correlation spectroscopy

FITC

Fluoresceine isothiocyanate

FN

Fibronectin

FRET

Fluorescence resonance energy transfer

GFP

Green fluorescent protein

Hz

Hertz (s−1)

kbp

Kilobase pairs

μTAS

Micro total analysis system

nDEP

Negative dielectrophoresis

nM

Nanomol/liter

nN

Nanonewton

OD

Outer diameter

PCB

Printed circuit board

PDMS

Poly(dimethylsiloxane)

PMMA

Poly(methylmethacrylate)

PNIPAAm

Poly(N-isoproypyl acrylamide)

POMA

Poly(octadecene-alt-maleic anhydride)

PTFE

Poly(tetrafluoroethylene)

RNA

Ribonucleic acid

TIRF

Total internal reflection fluorescence

UNF

Universal National Fine Thread

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. -U. Gast
    • 1
  • P. S. Dittrich
    • 2
  • P. Schwille
    • 3
  • M. Weigel
    • 4
  • M. Mertig
    • 4
  • J. Opitz
    • 4
  • U. Queitsch
    • 5
  • S. Diez
    • 5
  • B. Lincoln
    • 6
  • F. Wottawah
    • 6
  • S. Schinkinger
    • 6
  • J. Guck
    • 6
  • J. Käs
    • 6
  • J. Smolinski
    • 7
  • K. Salchert
    • 7
  • C. Werner
    • 7
  • C. Duschl
    • 8
  • M. S. Jäger
    • 8
  • K. Uhlig
    • 8
  • P. Geggier
    • 8
  • S. Howitz
    • 1
  1. 1.GeSiM mbHGrosserkmannsdorfGermany
  2. 2.Department MiniaturizationInstitute for Analytical SciencesDortmundGermany
  3. 3.Institute for Biophysics/BioTecTU DresdenDresdenGermany
  4. 4.Max Bergmann Center of Biomaterials and Institute of Materials ScienceTU DresdenDresdenGermany
  5. 5.Group Optical Technology Development and BionanotechnologyMax Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and GeneticsDresdenGermany
  6. 6.Institute for Soft Matter Physics, Department of Physics and GeosciencesUniversity of LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  7. 7.Department of Biocompatible MaterialsLeibniz Institute of Polymer Research and Max Bergmann Center of Biomaterials DresdenDresdenGermany
  8. 8.Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering (Fh-IBMT)BerlinGermany