Capturing and Clinical Applications of Circulating Tumor Cells with Wave Microfluidic Chip

  • Hongmei ChenEmail author


As a “liquid biopsy,” circulating tumor cell (CTC) enumeration with microfluidic chips has great significance in cancer prognosis. CTCs carry significant information as the original tumor. Integrated microfluidic chips are combining with affinity- and physical-based such as wave chip offers a new way to segregate CTCs. In this work, we further study capturing clinical applications of CTCs with wave chip. When cell suspension moves across the microposts array, CTCs squeeze out from narrow gaps organized by microposts. This movement renders CTCs to obtain a tilted velocity to fluid direction. This tilted velocity would direct CTCs to be captured by the smaller neighboring gaps next array. Simultaneously, interaction or friction time is longer due to barrier of modified microposts. These microposts would be effective for realizing binding of antigen and antibody. Therefore, both antibody-coated and physical-based isolations could be combined in isolating CTCs. Capture percentage concentrated on the first several arrays is shown theoretically and experimentally. Efficient capture could be obtained for artificial patient blood. Clinically, CTCs were tested positive for three metastatic human breast cancer patient samples. This wave chip is prospectively to be a valid tool for clinical enumeration of CTCs, carrying out anti-cancer drug assay.


Wave chip Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) Capturing Affinity-based Biorheological property 


Funding Information

This research work was supported by the Anhui Natural Science Foundation of China (1908085MF197) and Postdoctoral Research Funding (2014M550794).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Research Involving Human Participants and/or Animals

Patient blood samples were supplied by Longhua Hospital Affiliated to Shanghai Medical University under approval.

Informed Consent

The manuscript is approved by all authors for publication.


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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Mathematics and Physics of Science and EngineeringAnhui University of TechnologyMaanshanChina
  2. 2.Division of Nanobionic Research, Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-BionicsChinese Academy of SciencesSuzhouChina

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