Biomedical Microdevices

, 21:102 | Cite as

A theoretical study on real time monitoring of single cell mitosis with micro electrical impedance tomography

  • Xing LiEmail author
  • Fan Yang
  • Wei He
  • Boris Rubinsky


Real time monitoring of cell division, mitosis, at the single cell level, has value for many biomedical applications; such as developing optimal cancer treatments that target the cell division process. The goal of this theoretical study is to explore the feasibility of using Micro Electrical Impedance Tomography (MEIT) for real time monitoring of mitosis in a single cell, through imaging. MEIT employs a micro (single cell) scale electrode cage with electrodes placed around the cell. The electrodes deliver subsensory current and the consequential voltages on the electrodes are measured. An inverse image reconstruction algorithm uses the electric data from the electrodes to generate a map of electrical conductivity distribution in the chamber, which is the image. EIT is a well-known medical imaging technology that is simple to use but lacks good resolution. Therefore, it is not a-priori obvious that EIT has sufficient resolution to monitor single cell mitosis. To accomplish the goal of this study we have developed a mathematical model of MEIT of single cell mitosis, in which an in silico experiment provided the data for the MEIT image reconstruction. This theoretical study shows that MEIT can detect the outlines of the dividing cell during the various stages of mitosis (metaphase, anaphase and telophase) and, therefore, has potential as a technology for real time monitoring of single cell mitosis.


Single cell Mitosis Medical imaging Electrical impedance tomography 



We are thankful to the support from CSC scholarship. We thank the funding from the National Natural Science Foundation of China, Grand No. 51777023 and the National ‘111’ Project of China, Grant No. B08036.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Power Transmission Equipment & System Security and New TechnologyChongqing UniversityChongqingChina
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of California BerkeleyBerkeleyUSA

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