Size selective sampling using mobile, 3D nanoporous membranes
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We describe the fabrication of 3D membranes with precisely patterned surface nanoporosity and their utilization in size selective sampling. The membranes were self-assembled as porous cubes from lithographically fabricated 2D templates (Leong et al., Langmuir 23:8747–8751, 2007) with face dimensions of 200 μm, volumes of 8 nL, and monodisperse pores ranging in size from approximately 10 μm to 100 nm. As opposed to conventional sampling and filtration schemes where fluid is moved across a static membrane, we demonstrate sampling by instead moving the 3D nanoporous membrane through the fluid. This new scheme allows for straightforward sampling in small volumes, with little to no loss. Membranes with five porous faces and one open face were moved through fluids to sample and retain nanoscale beads and cells based on pore size. Additionally, cells retained within the membranes were subsequently cultured and multiplied using standard cell culture protocols upon retrieval.
KeywordsMicrofluidics/Microfabrication Nanoparticles/Nanotechnology Separations/Instrumentation Bioanalytical methods
This work was supported by the NIH Grant: R21EB007487-01A1 and the NSF Grant MRSEC DMR05-20491. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies. We acknowledge Anum Azam for her illustration.
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