Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 86, Issue 5, pp 1281–1292

Single-cell analysis and isolation for microbiology and biotechnology: methods and applications


DOI: 10.1007/s00253-010-2524-4

Cite this article as:
Ishii, S., Tago, K. & Senoo, K. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol (2010) 86: 1281. doi:10.1007/s00253-010-2524-4


Various single-cell isolation techniques, including dilution, micromanipulation, flow cytometry, microfluidics, and compartmentalization, have been developed. These techniques can be used to cultivate previously uncultured microbes, to assess and monitor cell physiology and function, and to screen for novel microbiological products. Various other techniques, such as viable staining, in situ hybridization, and those using autofluorescence proteins, are frequently combined with these single-cell isolation techniques depending on the purpose of the study. In this review article, we summarize currently available single-cell isolation techniques and their applications, when used in combination with other techniques, in microbiological and biotechnological studies.


Single-cell isolation Dilution-to-extinction Micromanipulation Flow cytometry Microfluidics Compartmentalization 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Applied Biological Chemistry, Graduate School of Agricultural and Life SciencesThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan

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