, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 897-905
Date: 25 Jun 2010

Patterned PDMS based cell array system: a novel method for fast cell array fabrication

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Abstract

Cell-cell interaction is important in numerous biological processes, including cell growth, cell differentiation and migration. The ability to generate pre-determined cell patterns or cell arrays on a study surface is crucial for cell-cell interaction studies. In this paper, we developed a method for fast cell array fabrication using laser sintering and the hydrophobicity of PDMS films. This approach can be easily adopted and is cost-effective. Hydrophobic PDMS films were fabricated into polymeric chips containing hundreds of microwells. The films were then transferred onto tissue culture surfaces to separate cells in the formation of cell arrays (Patterned PDMS based cell array system, PCAS). We used NIH/3T3 fibroblast cells to demonstrate the feasibility of PCAS. The success of fast fabrication of patterned cell arrays was obtained using different initial cell seeding densities. We also used poorly adherent PC-12 cells to demonstrate the cell-cell communication. Results showed that the method is very useful for studying topics such as cell-cell interaction, cell-substrate interaction or cell migration.