Assessment of Electroporation by Electrical Impedance Methods

  • Quim Castellví
  • Borja Mercadal
  • Antoni Ivorra
Living reference work entry


Electroporation causes an immediate increase in cell membrane permeability that results in membrane conductivity increase, which has an effect in the measured impedance of the cell suspension or the tissue. Therefore, impedance measurements offer the possibility to perform real-time assessment of the electroporation phenomenon in a minimally invasive fashion. Nevertheless, impedance measurements in biological organisms depend on many factors and other processes besides the membrane permeabilization. This lack of specificity can be an important drawback for using impedance measurements as an electroporation measure. An equivalent electrical model of cell suspensions and tissues is commonly employed to better understand how the different processes that take place during electroporation can affect the measured impedance of a sample. This chapter briefly overviews the information that can be extracted from impedance measurements during and after the application of electroporation pulses. These measurements have been widely used to observe and analyze the dynamics of the phenomenon. Impedance has the potential to be used as a tool to assess electroporation effectiveness of treatment. A significant conclusion from the experimental studies on the topic is that conductivity measured shortly after treatment appears to be correlated with electroporation effectiveness in terms of cell membrane permeabilization. That is, it has the potential to be used as an electroporation effectiveness indicator. On the other hand, dynamic conductivity during the electroporation pulses, which is much easier to be measured, does not seem to be correlated with electroporation effectiveness.


Electroporation Bioimpedance Electrical impedance Membrane conductivity Electroporation assessment Real-time monitoring 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Quim Castellví
    • 1
  • Borja Mercadal
    • 1
  • Antoni Ivorra
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Information and Communication TechnologiesUniversitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Serra Húnter ProgramUniversitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain

Section editors and affiliations

  • Boris Rubinsky
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringUniversity of CaliforniaBerkeleyUSA

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